Lest We Forget

As most of you know, I joined the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) a while back. Given the current cultural climate here in the Nation Formerly Known as the United States of America, it’s about the most politically incorrect organization I could belong to. I suppose the Klan would be worse, but to the progressive mainstream it’s undoubtedly “Klan, Sons of Confederate Veterans — same thing.”

Many years ago I wrote a poem entitled “Mason Dixon” that began with these lines:

The central obsession of our federal estate
is the bloody conflict that divided it.
Thirteen decades later its veterans’ reunions
and widows’ pensions are no more,
but the dead still rest uneasy
in their ordered rows.

The sleep of the Civil War dead is even more disturbed these days. If the woke brigades get their way, every last Confederate soldier will be dug up from his final resting place and — What? Burned? Thrown in the swamp? Shipped to Devil’s Island?

We who are descended from Confederate veterans are expected to repudiate our ancestors. The new politically correct regime is determined to wipe their collective memory from our culture and replace it with a Snidely Whiplash version which is all about slavery and the cruel, evil slave-owners who were righteously vanquished by the virtuous Union armies.

Slavery was an abomination, but the war was about a lot more than just slavery. Here in Virginia it was about being invaded — in 1861 the Union army came down the Shenandoah Valley west of the Blue Ridge, torching farms and crops, and taking prominent citizens hostage to be held against the good behavior of the rest of the community.

There were hardly any slaves in the Shenandoah Valley. Do you really think that slavery was the most important issue on the minds of the citizens of Winchester and Front Royal and Port Republic when their young men took up arms, joined the militia, and left their homes to muster under the command of General Robert E. Lee?

We were invaded.

When I talk to my liberal friends, I sometimes mention that I’ve joined the SCV, just to see what their reaction will be. When they express consternation (as is usually the case), I point out that Virginia was invaded by a foreign aggressor in much the same way that Ukraine was invaded last February. Shouldn’t we celebrate the heroic (albeit futile) resistance of the Virginians against that aggression, just as we celebrate the heroic Ukrainians?

That’s a difficult one for the liberal mind to grapple with. It seems that sometimes invasion is a good thing — it all depends on who is invading whom.

Before 1865 Virginia was a sovereign commonwealth, part of an aggregation known as the United States, the membership in which was considered a voluntary association. But the enemy won the war, and that changed everything. Our sovereignty was destroyed, and states’ rights became increasingly a fiction. Our liberties were steadily eroded, reaching a culmination in the totalitarian dystopia under which our spirits groan today.

Before then the phrase “United States” was treated as a plural noun, but it has been understood as a singular one ever since the ink dried on the surrender in Appomattox on April 9, 1865.

This morning I attended the Memorial Day observance at the Confederate Cemetery in Farmville. It was organized by the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) in collaboration with the SCV. Several chapters of the UDC were in attendance at the ceremonies, as were several camps of the SCV.

The event was unabashedly Christian. It opened and closed with a prayer, and the various speakers made repeated references to God and Jesus Christ in their remarks about the events we were commemorating.

We pledged allegiance to the U.S. Flag, the Commonwealth of Virginia, and the Confederate battle flag. Yes, I know those pledges seem contradictory. But we lost the war, and as honorable men, we must acknowledge our suzerainty under the superior power of a victorious adversary.

We sang Amazing Grace. We sang Dixie. A lady from the UDC sang Taps. And the honor guard concluded the ceremony by firing a three-volley salute to the men who were buried on the hillside below us.

(Those graves are unmarked, not because the site is a mass grave, but because the original wooden markers eventually rotted away, and the community was too poor after the war to replace them with stone versions.)

The Memorial Day observance today in the Farmville Confederate Cemetery was the same as any other observance all across the country: it commemorated the valor of honorable men who served their country and gave their lives for it.

In our case, the day was made a little more poignant by the overwhelming pressure from the larger culture to forget those men, but we refuse to do that. We will remember them.

P.S. I don’t think there was a single Biden voter in attendance today at the Confederate Cemetery.

55 thoughts on “Lest We Forget

  1. If Robert E. Lee, son of Harry “Lighthorse” Lee, had chosen the United States instead of Virginia, history would have been radically different. Also, if the yahoos had not invaded Fort Sumpter but had remained on the mainland in the defensive position that they had been assigned to, I doubt that there would have been a war and most likely there would be two versions of the united states with both engaging in the slavery of the workers. The Industrial Revolution that began after the Civil War saw the enslavement of about 80% of the population that lived north of the Mason-Dixon line. BTW, California and the west wasn’t much better as the Okies and Mexicans were similarly enslaved.

    • As a foreigner, I understand that the Federal manning of Fort Sumpter to be a provocation and that the guns in Fort Sumpter could shell the city of Charleston.

      Just like the false flag that heralded and ‘justified’ the German invasion of Poland in 1939.

    • Perhaps if Lincoln had accepted the CSA proposal to depart the Union peacefully, paying its share of the national debt and abiding by the guarantees made by all 13 colonies that any state could leave the Union at any time for any reason as an adjunct to the ratification of th Constitution peace might have reigned. But since Lincoln sanctioned war crimes on a scale unheard of since Atilla only the ill informed, the indoctrinated and the uneducated vomit forth the Kearns version of Lincoln’s War of Aggression.

      Enlighten me please what nation fought a war to end slavery? What leader declared slavery ended where his writ did not run but preserved it where he reigned supreme. Lincoln , Obama’s model.

      • What you call so called war crimes is just plain ole war, where there is only Victor and vanquished, history remembers the Victors and don’t give a rat’s backside on how much bloody they spilt to get that Victory. God bless General Sherman.

  2. That flag has been on the fields of the bloodiest battles in American history.

    My pedigree on my mother’s side goes all the way back to a pair or brothers from one of the germanic states near the french border who secured the permission of the local king to immigrate to the Colonies. One of them fought in the Revolutionary War and received a letter of commendation from General Washington upon completion of his service. Descendants fought on the Confederate side of the War Between the States. One ancestor owned slaves in Texas and upon the conclusion of the war released them from his service. Many of them stayed on to work the land as paid employees and took the family name of their former master. Their descendants still carry my mother’s family name. My grandfather was in the Marines prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor and was sent to reinforce Midway Island, thereby being present for the battle and assisted with shooting down at least one Japanese aircraft, a piece of which he saved and which I eventually inherited. He survived the island hopping campaigns in the Pacific and only passed away a few years ago. My father was in the reserves during Korea and never saw action there, but was in Laos and Cambodia as part of a CIA program to deliver supplies and weapons to mountain villagers in both of those countries who were hostile to the communists. My own service was uneventful, joining at the tail end of the first Gulf War, until 9-11 after which I served tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. My own son has a few more years before he’s able to serve but the modern US military is not anywhere I would want him to be. God forbid that he won’t have to fight as a guerrilla or partisan against whatever dictatorship my country seems to be running headlong towards.

    I don’t think anyone should ever be ashamed of having ancestors who fought on the wrong side of a war or for an evil regime. It’s easy to judge or apply modern standards to ancestors that lived in different times and fafed different realities. Lord knows history will likely judge our own woke time as an era of mass insanity, psychosis, and societal breakdown, and will marvel how we lived through it and why we didn’t put an end to it sooner.

    • My family’s scion was a Welshman who came to this country as an indentured servant in 1723 to the “Carolinas” in the area that is now South Carolina. We have been farmers, mechanics, machinists, and inventors and have always lived south of the Mason-Dixon line. We were run out of the South and ended up in Missouri with my grandfather being sent to SoCal to manage an orange grove. We know very well the mendacity and self-serving behaviors of the powers-that-be but we have chosen to carry on despite their imprecations knowing that our reward awaits in heaven and it eternal while they are receiving their reward here and their reward is temporal at best.

    • A family history you can be proud of. I’ve never traced mine back that far. My own father wasn’t in, but his dad and uncle were. I’ve never traced my ancestors on that side very far, not past about 1900 or so. But they were in GA for several generations before my 88 year old grandfather was born.

      As a vet, I would not allow my children to join the US military. And I would advice any children of a close friend or other family member against it as well. It’s difficult to imagine that changing in the foreseeable future. There are A LOT of white conservative veterans who feel the same way. This is already causing recruitment/retention issues. It’s only gonna get worse too.

  3. B I am so glad to see that these young men are still remembered, Lincoln had no right under the Constitution to move against the Commonwealth of Virginia and in doing so he set in motion the belittleling of that document that has now become a leftist plague.

    The problem was, that although ‘voluntary’, there was no specified route to secession and Lincoln used this ‘loophole’ to eventually flay the South (Sherman’s march to the sea was probably the worst ever war crime up to that date).

    This is of course very relevant to modern Brexit, Frexit, Italexit and even Germexit. When the colossus becomes unstable, the tyrants can justify their illegal acts to dominate ‘we the people’. Liberal Democracy dies…..

    • Which is probably why they made such a hero of him, as all of his crimes needed to be covered up by public adulation. BTW, his wife was a high-bred southerner.

    • General Sherman’s March to the sea was just plain ole fashioned war, no such thing as a war crime, just war, Victor and vanquished, that’s it.

      As for Europe? The EU is unsustainable and will fail and states will do what they always do, administer themselves in their own best interests, because nature says so.

  4. Re: “We who are descended from Confederate veterans are expected to repudiate our ancestors. The new politically correct regime is determined to wipe their collective memory from our culture and replace it with a Snidely Whiplash version which is all about slavery and the cruel, evil slave-owners who were righteously vanquished by the virtuous Union armies.”

    A few years ago, Stacey Abrams – the black female politician and prominent Democrat – during her run for governor of the state of Georgia, voiced her opinion that the relief sculpture carved into Stone Mountain, Georgia, should be in her words “blown up.”

    Gee, why is it that when leftist radicals (especially black ones like her) voice support for acts of cultural and other forms of terrorism, they are never censured, let alone punished? Isn’t making violent threats considered a crime anymore?

    Let a white person or someone else who is not black and not a protected minority make such statements, the burly guys in dark sunglasses and dark suits, sporting federal law-enforcement credentials, will be paying you a visit to ask you some questions and perhaps engage in some not-so-subtle intimidation.

    Can you say “two-tiered legal system”?

    The erasure of history is a favorite communist tactic going back more than a century. During the brutal regime of Josef Stalin, any historian whose work displeased the “Breaker of Nations” was sent to the gulag to contemplate his sins, if he was lucky, and shot in the neck and buried in an unmarked grave if he was not. The veracity of the work had nothing to do with it.

    It brings to mind George Orwell’s famous quote: “The past was erased, the erasure was forgotten, the lie became the truth.”

    Orwell’s observation is right on the mark. By erasing history that they dislike or find inconvenient to their agenda, the communists hope to substitute in its place ideologically-correct “history” which fits their agenda. And since the control of the past is one of the ways tyrants exert control in the present, they turn history into a weapon.

    One of the greatest fallacies underlying the left’s obsession with things like the American Civil War (War Between the States), is that guilt for the sins of the past is inherited and passed down from generation to generation of white southerners. It is logically-speaking a non-sequitur, utter nonsense… but such crackpot ideas have attained currency on the political left and amongst many who otherwise identify as “conservative” and ought to know better.

    How can a young women born in Alabama in 1980 who happens to be of European ancestry, a.k.a. white, be guilty of crimes which allegedly occurred more than a century before her birth?

    The United States has spent a cool trillion (That’s “trillions” with a t, folks) dollars since the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act to remediate the wrongs done in the Jim Crow era and before. Further, life in this country has been altered in countless ways large and small, to accommodate this effort.

    Yet, numerous black activists are as angry as ever, and some have even stated that no amount of money can placate them, or cause them to forgive and forget the wrongs they claim have happened. Some have voiced support for what amounts to a ‘reverse’ apartheid system in this country, one which mirrors the one outlawed in South Africa, only with whites/Europeans on the bottom and others over them. New York State even got as far as forming a “Truth and Reconciliation” commission, which even copied the nomenclature used in that foreign nation.

    In the world these Jacobin radicals envision, modern-day whites can only be allowed to participate in wider society by the constant wearing of sackcloth and ashes, and perpetually apologizing for crimes they didn’t commit.

    Well, here is one American southerner who is having none of it. As a younger and much more-naive man, I might have been duped into believing in this vile nonsense, but as an older man, I refuse to bend a knee. I am no racist and never have been, if anyone is racist here, it is these radical bomb-thrower types who refuse to live as civilized human beings and work and play well with others.

    Not only am I disinclined to apologize for being a southerner, I am proud of the fact. If blacks, Latinos, feminists, the LGBTQ crew, et al. are allowed to feel pride in their identity – then guess who else is going to do it? Yep, that’s right. I’m not obnoxious about it, but I am proud of the accomplishments of my race, my heritage and my civilization. And there’s not a damned thing the Stacey Abrams of the world can do about it.

    Perhaps the most-galling lie of all peddled by these race hucksters and charlatans is that the white race – Europeans – are uniquely responsible for slavery. The truth is that human bondage and chattel slavery is as old as humanity and has been practiced by every ethnicity, race, group and culture one can name. Unique to the United States and Great Britain, however, are that these two European civilizations took the lead in helping to abolish and outlaw slavery – not only in their respective nations, but around the world.

    The American Civil War, which was not just about slavery, none the less cost the lives of more than half a million Americans in outlawing that practice. The British Royal Navy, beginning in 1808 with the West African Squadron, interdicted slave ships all along the west coast of Africa, where many slave ships debarked for their destinations around the world. Since the British Empire was vast, this effort spread far-and-wide.

    So, if Europeans are not the biggest slavers in history, who is? Why, it is the Muslims, one of the left’s favorite identity groups! Not only did the soldiers of Allah enslave countless black Africans, but millions of Europeans taken in raids as far north as Iceland and Ireland.

    One last lie to put to bed: The left makes much political hay these days claiming to be the party of black civil rights, but as usual, they’re lying. The most-staunch holdouts against the enfranchisement of blacks in the American South during the Civil Rights Era were Southern Democrats. And Democrat politicians such as Woodrow Wilson were some of the most virulent racists around. Even in the modern world, men like former Senator Robert Byrd (D-WV), attained leadership positions within the Democrat hierarchy that they held for decades. Byrd had been in the KKK, but you’d never know it from the silence of the leftist political machine.

    Whereas, although the Democrats have made considerable political hay dragging the reputation of fine men like the late Senator Barry Goldwater (AZ-R) through the mud of racism and bigotry, Goldwater not only fought for black civil rights in the 1950s, he was also ahead of his time on rights for homosexuals. Goldwater, who was no bigot, was tarred as one by Lyndon Johnson – who was a real racist and bigot behind his carefully-crafted public persona – because he voted against the Civil Rights Act. Goldwater, a brilliantly insightful man who foresaw the constitutional and other carnage the act would ultimately produce, was decades ahead of his time in that way as well. He foresaw that the act would create a de facto two-tiered society and legal system, and he was right.

    • Georgia, I really do enjoy reading your grasp of history and where it has brought us today, very insightful, well reasoned and thought provoking, I do salute your efforts and do agree with you although I am only a first gen American whose father and grandfather came from Austria and Prussia after the war and am a multiple combat tour vet of Uncle Sam’s Misguided Children. With at being said, this country is now Balkanized beyond fixing, repairing and voting our way out of this mess, this ends as it always does, since man is tribal by nature and will eventually come to a point that we cannot live peacefully with the other tribes because our survival will depend upon our own. History has born this out time immortal, diversity/multiculturalism has never worked and never will, hence war is inevitable because we will be forced to it. South Africa and Rhodesia is the prime example of what happens when 3rd worlders take over, and the same language against them is now being used against us in the US and Canada, war is the only outcome.

  5. I spent my first four school years at Kernstown School outside of Winchester. Our bus used to drive us to the cemetery and put battle flags on the graves.

    Thank you! Reading this was a blessing.

  6. I currently have been reading about some of the Confederate heroes of the second war for independence. I am amazed that many of the marxist stunts of the 1860’s are being repeated today. Stay alert and decide which side you are on early, because it has all ready started.

  7. Well done. I visited the grave of Colonel James Harvey Allen, CSA Co. H, 5th Va Cavalry
    1829-1898
    Lest we forget.

  8. Under US law, everyone who served in the Civil War is considered an American Veteran.
    I am a member of the Sons of the Union Veterans of the Civil War, and believe that all who served should be remembered Federal or Confederate.

    • @ Gregory Spangler

      Re: “Under US law, everyone who served in the Civil War is considered an American Veteran.”

      Yes, quite right! In the last decades of the 1800s – the 19th century – there was a concerted effort in the U.S. to close the wounds opened by the War Between the States. One of the steps taken in doing this was to treat Northern and Southern veterans of the conflict as being equivalent in stature as far as veteran’s benefits were concerned. It was also in this period that many of the forts, camps, bases and ports used by the various branches of the U.S. military were named in honor of Union and Confederate notables, such as Sheridan, Hood, etc.

      The relative success of this effort can be measured by the fact that the country was able in 1898 to muster troops for the Spanish-American War from every state in the union.

      The U.S. Army had gone quite a ways toward racial integration during the era of the Plains Indian Wars, and black cavalrymen and soldiers – a.k.a. “Buffalo Soldiers” – played an honored part in those campaigns. Black soldiers also fought in the Punitive Expedition to Mexico in 1914-1916, whose purpose was to catch notorious bandito Pancho Villa, who had been terrorizing settlements along the U.S.-Mexican border for some years prior.

      Much of the progress attained in this area was rolled by Woodrow Wilson, a Democrat racist from the American northeast, upon his ascent to the Oval Office. He’s the guy who liked screening “Birth of a Nation” at the White House….

      Black Americans who had formerly fought under the American flag, found that the door was closed to them. Many went to French and enlisted in the war effort against Imperial Germany 1914-1918 through joining the French military. It took decades to undo the damage done by Wilson.

  9. Ukraine was invaded by the US in Feb. 2014 when its elected government was replaced during a violent coup by a US DoS-picked neo-nazi junta. The junta then proceeded to make war on the ethnic Russian population in the eastern industrial region of the country for 8 years killing over 15,000 civilians. Russia is militarily putting an end to that genocidal project now.

      • The US State Dept. provided a transcript of Undersecretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland’s Feb. 2014 phone call with Amb. Jeffry Pyatt wherein they were discussing the several personnel they wished to see head the post-US coup gov’t: all of whom were ‘elected’ shortly thereafter. RT reported it and so did ‘The Guardian’. The aerial and artillery attacks on civilian areas of cities and small towns in east of Ukraine by the military of US-administered Ukrainian junta is well-documented by many thousands of videos. If you are unfamiliar with that part of the war in US-administered Ukraine, it is because you consume highly-censored media content.

  10. “The consolidation of the states into one vast empire, sure to be aggressive abroad and despotic at home, will be the certain precursor of ruin which has overwhelmed all that preceded it.”

    ― Robert E. Lee

  11. You mention that no Biden voters were in attendance. I take it then that no one was wearing a Covid mask either.

    • Not a single one!

      Months ago, when most of the rest of the country was still wearing masks, there were none in evidence at the SCV meetings.

  12. I salute the South but there is one big question I have:
    (I have only rudimentary knowledge of the war, so please indulge me)

    I see General Lee as a southern gentleman, but after Sherman`s March to the sea the way of the gentlemen was over.

    General Lee should have adapted or stepped down.

    My question: Why did the South not assault? After the March to the sea it was clear, that the north would burn everything.
    Just imagine that all the soldiers of the South move north.
    Some sacrifice themselves by pining the northern forces in place while the others move into northern territories and burn, pillage etc just like the north.
    And Sherman is sent a letter by Lee stating: Thank you for teaching me that the age of Gentleman is over.

    • By the time Sherman was marching through Georgia, the South was in desperate straits. Its armies suffered from a shortage of supplies and ammo, and also of manpower, of course.

      The soldiers were near starvation. Everyone has heard of the appalling conditions in the Confederate prison for Union prisoners of war in Andersonville, Georgia. The thing is, the official ration for a Confederate soldier was scarcely more than what a starving Union prisoner in Andersonville received.

      There was no hope of a sustained counteroffensive at that point. When the siege of Petersburg was broken, Lee’s hope was to be able to retreat quickly south and west to a point where he could regroup his forces and mount an effective defense. But the Union troops got behind him at Appomattox, and his only choices were to surrender or see his troops slaughtered without any hope of victory.

      The final battle of the Civil War was fought at Sayler’s Creek, just a few miles from the Confederate cemetery in Farmville. After that there were only skirmishes before the surrender in Appomattox.

      One of the skirmishes was at the High Bridge across the Appomattox River just outside of Farmville. The High Bridge was actually two bridges, a railroad bridge with a lower wagon bridge alongside it. The retreating Confederates poured oil on the timbers of the railroad bridge and set it on fire in an attempt to prevent the Union troops from being able to use it. They left a rear guard at the west end of the bridge that engaged the Yankees who tried to put the fire out. Unfortunately for the Confederates, some Union soldiers were able to get across the wagon bridge. If I remember correctly, they drove back the Confederates and were able to save the bridge. That allowed them to move down the rail line to Appomattox Station and get behind Lee’s army when it was camped just east of Appomattox Courthouse.

      And the rest, alas, is history.

      The Farmville SCV camp is called “High Bridge Camp” in honor of the skirmish at the bridge.

      • The Civil was over on July 04, 1863 when Vicksburg fell. It was the last Southern fortress on the Mississippi. Once it fell, the South had little or no communication or commerce with the outside world and no industry to support its army.
        Jefferson Davis should have been asking for terms the next day.

        • Gettysburg ended the same day. It was just Not to Be. There were many opportunities for a Southern Victory, but Defense was not ever going to win long term against a more populous and industrial North. The Northern Society was as inconvenienced as the current USA was during Iraq war, not at all.

  13. THERE ARE 11 countries WAITING IN AMERICA RIGHT NOW,for americas DADDY “OBAMA” to give the orders to attack,THEIR waiting till the big asteroid hits in the carabean,THEN after the earthquake levels haft the country the invasion will begin,YOUR WOMEN AND CHILDREN will be taken as slaves and your men will be killed,WHEN the invaders are done looting america,THEY WILL DROP NUCLEAR WEAPONS on every city till america is nothing but a pile of nuclear ashes…completely destroyed..and NOT many surviors left…THIS COULD BE STOPPED,but you’d have to kill everyone in the government to save the country,AND THAT is the fly in the ointment,there are NO MEN to stand up and do it…YOU WILL HANG YOUR HEAD IN SHAME as your lead away in chains..wishing you had done anything besides playing games out in the woods..

  14. The Lincoln cult has all but ruined the idea of honest history. It is difficult to get young Southerners to open their minds enough to comprehend that their ancestors were defending their homes and families by repelling invasion by an alien army whose stated purpose was rapine and conquest. When, on April 15, 1861, Lincoln ordered the raising of an army specifically for invasion and conquest of the sovereign States of the South any arguments concerning slavery or Ft Sumter became trivial compared to the subjugation and coercion which Lincoln vowed to visit upon the South. The battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia, and it’s peers from the armies of the Mississippi, Trans-Mississippi, etc. are the living blood soaked symbol of the Right and Duty of free men to resist tyrannical government. It is the symbol and the 2nd Amendment is the text. It is imperative to the District of the Capitol that the flag, and the men who gave all under it, be denounced, reviled, and spurned or the People might get “ideas” about who is the sovereign and who is the servant.

    Many writers, Solzhenitsyn, Orwell, et.al., would recognize this as the requirement of authoritarian regimes for denunciations to reinforce societal alienation. A person who accepts denunciation of distant ancestors, the dead, will more easily rationalize denouncing the living, grandparents, parents, siblings, neighbors, coworkers, in-laws, friends, strangers on the street or anyone to deflect official attention from themselves. That this doesn’t in anyway endear one to the regime, or make one in anyway safe, but rather slowly reduces society to solitary fragments that can be bullied piecemeal is lost in the panic to not be cancelled for unwillingness to denounce. What is currently referred to as cancel culture is nothing new and there is no aspect of it that is harmless of without effect.

    My ancestors have served in every war America has fought back to and including Queen Anne’s war. My children have fought in all of the recent ones. Never again if I have my way. Whenever I have the opportunity to engage young Southrons about their futures I strongly discourage them from taking the “King’s wage” as it were.

    Short answer: I’m fully with the Baron on this. I consider myself a de-reconstructed Confederate and, like the song sez, I ain’t gonna apologize for anything we done.

    • Tom, your first paragraph contains a truth that too many people don’t know. My state, among others, held a referendum on the subject of secession. It was no landslide, but the majority voted to remain within the Union, hoping to avoid bloodshed. Then came Sumter, and in the aftermath, Lincoln’s call for an army to force the independent states into submission. It was then that my state and others voted again, and this time the majority chose to face the horrors of war, rather than try to compel fellow free men to bend their knees to tyranny.

    • The cult of Lincoln has its flaws, but the Confederacy wad not defending itself from a “rapine” “foreign” invader. The Confederacy was an army of Anti-American coastal elites who wrecked their own economy and then blamed others for it. When they didn’t get their way, they started a war.

      Lincoln didn’t call out the army until after the Confederates attacked Fort Sumpter. Imagine today a communist faction attacking a fort, seizing its weapons, and then other states joining in, lynching anyone who doesn’t go along. What would you think of an anticommunist leader who, after the Reds start the war, just meekly submits and makes unilateral concessions to the perfidious leftists? You’d say he was a weakling. Lincoln was not a weakling in the face of perfidious leftists.

      Lincoln did not promise subjugation upon the south, as you imply. In the beginning of the war, the Union troops were ordered to not disturb private property. After it became clear that this wouldn’t change minds, and the Confederacy would have slavery or death, the Union stopped caring about their sensitivities. And since the Confederacy was in a state of total mobilization, the destruction landed on legitimate military targets.

      So while Lincoln was not a demigod, the Confederacy was America’s first French Revolution.

  15. Wonderful post, Baron. Thank you and fellow travelers.
    Like many of you, I celebrated Memorial Day in a local cemetery-prayed, sang America the Beautiful and the Star Spangled Banner and was reminded about the 13 folds of the flag when en route to a tri-corner flag. VFW, Police, Vets and a couple of young families along with us middle and seasoned neighbors came together. Moved to tears every year. Hope I never stop as I love the USA and our freedom loving patriots. We know they are full of nonsense.

  16. My great great grandfather perished at Camp Douglas. He was a Georgia dirt farmer, husband, and father of 5. He was captured at the battle of Kennesaw Mountain, in his home state.

    I was a member of SCV but quit my dues when they showed up in Trenton Fl and gave out a “Herbert Hoover award” to the sheriff’s department. Herbert Hoover? Are you kidding me? Who comes up with this? I have continued to donate to the museum effort and the Stand Watie scholarship as I also had kin in the Cherokee Legion.

  17. >Slavery was an abomination, but the war was about a lot more than just slavery.

    Longstreet commented – after the war – that he had hever heard any of the other justifications until after the war was lost, and that in the leadup, it was definitely about slavery.

    > I point out that Virginia was invaded by a foreign aggressor in much the same way that Ukraine was invaded last February

    Reading the Federalist Papers makes certain things clear, among others, that it was absolutely taken as self-evident by the people writing them (in 1788, mind you) that once joined the Union would not be dissolvable. That was the whole point. They put a great deal of effort into discussing the expected consequences of multiple sovereignties and/or confederacies on the North American continent, and what it would mean for states or regions to be able to regularly change allegiances, and the various negatives, and why a _permanent_ federal authority would negate those negative consequences they were warning against. Some of those negative consequences were already starting to show during the war. Others have shown up in recent decades thansk to current political conflicts. Enough to convince me they had legitimate concerns.

    (William Tecumseh Sherman echoed some of those arguments (in terser and more direct form, in a way that leads me to think it was at least partly his own thinking and not something he’d read somewhere) in a discussion he had – I think it was postwar with a Confederate officer, but I’d have to double-check the specifics – he was convinced that multiple sovereignties would turn the American continent into a snakepit of foreign manipulation, playing different governments off against each other in a Balkanized situation of constant miserable war, and that any action was justified in preventing such an outcome. Look at what the Chinese or Russians or Israelis or Indians are doing in terms of buying influence right now, and imagine how much worse it would be if they had multiple and smaller governments to play with. He had a point.)

    The “foreign aggressor” argument works only if the ratification of the Constitution did not mean what the authors and proponents of the document clearly intended and understood it to mean. If that was the case, it should have been made clear prior to ratification, not retconned 70 years later.

    >Before 1865 Virginia was a sovereign commonwealth, part of an aggregation known as the United States, the membership in which was considered a voluntary association.

    This is an absolute falsehood and any examination of the pro and con arguments for ratification made at the time will make that clear. Ratifying the federal constitution terminated sovereignty. You can discuss whether or not that was a good thing and what negative consequences have followed – and there’s a lot to be said on that – but what you can not do is claim that something clearly ceded, whose cession was in fact the whole point, was ceded without being ceded at all.

    None of which is to disapprove of the organization or events discussed.

    • Alexander Hamilton made that point in his submittal to the Federalist Papers. He cited what happened to Holland when regional concerns became more important than continuing as a nation. Belgium and Luxembourg as separate countries emerged out of the confusion.

      • Bear in mind when discussing the Founding Fathers and their views on nationhood and similar subjects, that they divided roughly into two camps – the Federalists, as exemplified by pro-government statist Alexander Hamilton – and the Anti-Federalists, who opposed them in favor of states rights and a weaker central government.

        In other words, one cannot get a truly comprehensive view of the debate surrounding the formation of the new republic without reading both sides of the argument, and not just the Federalist one which won out in the end.

        There is a dissident school of historical scholarship which regards the Constitutional Convention as being rigged from the start to produce a constitution too-weak to restrain the eventual growth of the federal government into the leviathan it later became.

        Whether the constitution was intentionally crafted to be weak, or did not adequate restrain government and its growth due to inherent but inadvertent flaws, the result has been the same: The federal government long-ago burst the constitutional chains restraining its actions and growth.

    • Not entirely correct. Sovereignty was present in almost all ways. At least it was until the terrible “Progressive Era” which saw state power torn down by the 17th Amendment and the destruction of uniform taxation for the income tax of the 16th Amendment. Don’t forget the 10th Amendment in the Bill of Rights, “Those powers NOT delegated to the United States, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.” In Federalist 45: Madison wrote the powers of the federal government were few and defined, those of the state governments were numerous and indefinite. Hamilton wrote in Federalist 84 that a Bill of Rights was unnecessary and used the literal example of Liberty of Press to prove his point. Hamilton admitted that a strict, exegetical, interpretation of the Constitution was the proper interpretation. Hamilton’s words were disregarded when the Federalist controlled Congress and a Federalist president – John Adams passed the 1798 Alien and Sedition Acts which obliterated the 1st Amendment and that “Congress shall make no law…” In Antifederalist 78, Brutus warned that there was no way to correct an accidental or intentionally improper ruling of the Supreme Court. There is no REAL check and balance over the Supreme Court which Hamilton stated in Federalist 78 that the Judicial Branch would be the weakest. Consider the havoc created by the Supreme Court in our recent history.

      In Antifederalist 17 Robert Yates warned that Federalist Power will Ultimately Subvert State Authority though the eisegetical use of the Necessary and Proper Clause as well as other clauses of the Constitution such as the Commerce Clause.

      It all comes down to interpretation of the Constitution. If one interprets it eisegetically (eisegesis), then one places one’s own thoughts and ideas in place of what was actually written and ratified. John Marshall, the so-called prolific Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, created the power of Judicial Review. Which is the power that is used to strike down state and/or federal laws. Read Article III of the Constitution. NOWHERE is that power given! Read Article II which creates the executive branch. Consider how presidents seem to wield so much power by issuing executive orders. NOWHERE is that power given. At least not given in the scope and effect that it is used. The 14th Amendment was intended to help former slaves but it has been used eisegetically as well to render the states as vassals for the feds through the ridiculous concept of “INCORPORATION OF MOST BUT NOT ALL OF THE BILL RIGHTS.” Research the “Incorporation Doctrine” which began in 1925 Gitlow v. New York.

      There is no longer sovereignty of states that is true. But it is because of poor amendments and a wide use of eisegesis to “interpret” the Constitution and not through the creation of the Constitution originally.

  18. What gives the right of one group of people to forever lock their Ancestors into a binding agreement regardless of future circumstances? Sounds like slavery to me. Also the document specifically States the Union was for the benefit for them and to be passed to their Posterity. Who would their posterity be? Gee that ship has sailed. The “Contract has been broken and invalidated. If the citizens of the South had the authority to enter into the “union” of States then the Citizens of the South had the right to withdraw from that Union.
    Especially now considering the Federals have moved so far from the intent of the Constitution it is almost meaningless today. ( By the way it is supposed to be “These” United States not “The” United States). The argument regarding foreign influence is a little ridiculous seeing the amount of it that occurred 30-40 years later and is still occurring now. Does George Soros ring any bells? The Rothchilds? Warburgs etc? The tragedy is the South had the War won on the very first day. If Lee would have marshalled His forces and captured Washington then moved into the industrial sections of the North the War is over. Unfortunately Lee was thinking defense. You cannot win a war only through defense.

    • I agree with Walter Mitty and to prove it remember the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union which was the governing contract/document before the Constitution. The A of C and Perpetual Union lasted from 1781 through 1789. It seems as though perpetual meant less than a decade. Also, Jefferson wrote in the Declaration that, “…But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, IT IS THEIR RIGHT, IT IS THEIR DUTY, to throw off such Government, and provide new Guards for their future security.” (emphasis added)

      In Article I, Section 8, Clause 1, the Constitution states that taxes were to be uniform which is the same for everyone. The 16th Amendment changed that, but South Carolinians believed, accurately, that the North was using the import tariffs on the South to coerce Southerners to buy Northern manufactured goods and support their states’ industries by denying the competitive factor of imports from Europe.

      Remember, Article I, Section 7, Clause 1, grants the House of Representatives the power to be the sole initiator of taxes. The House of Representatives has proportional representation, which is to say, based on population. Thus, the population majority of the North was intentionally used to force Southerners to financially support the industries of the North.

      So, South Carolina nullified the Tariff of Abominations (Tariff of 1828) and additionally the Tariff of 1832 in its Ordinance of Nullification. Which prompted action by Congress (The Force Bill at Andrew Jackson’s insistence.)

      There were other issues such as the Missouri Compromise of 1820 which would eventually limit Southern/Slave states representation in Congress. Most Southerners did not own slaves or were in the Yeoman Farmer class. Slavery was an issue but there were other issues as well which led to the War Between the States.

      Common sense tells you also, that when the South was on the ropes following Sherman’s capture of Atlanta and the pinning of the Army of Northen Virgina around Richmond and Petersburg summer and early fall of 1864. If the reason for the war was for slavery, why would poor Southern soldiers who owned no slaves, continue the struggle with no real hope left, especially after Lincoln’s re-election in November of 1864 through April of 1865?

      Sarge from South Carolina

    • [Material that I deprecate]. The notion of locking descendents into a contract is the difference between a country and an alliance: alliances can be dissolved on a whim, countries cannot.

      The Confederacy, as a left-wing movement, claimed “the will of the people” justified their treason, but that does not compel Lincoln to make unilateral concessions to a country he does not recognize. Federal governments have their rights, even if anarchist-wannabes don’t accept this.

      Lee was defensive? The man was reckless with attacks, and lost over 180,000 men trying to “win” like you suggest.

  19. @ Dan Palmer

    Re: “If the reason for the war was for slavery, why would poor Southern soldiers who owned no slaves, continue the struggle with no real hope left, especially after Lincoln’s re-election in November of 1864 through April of 1865?”

    After three years of unrestricted warfare, the typical soldier – whether Union or Confederate – would likely have forgotten the initial reasons the war had been joined in the first place, and was by that time fighting for other reasons such as retribution for buddies lost in combat, privations the war inflicted upon him and his family, and simple honor and belief in the rightness of his side. And in the case of the South, most importantly of all, Johnny Reb believed himself to be defending his home, family and civilization. Men will fight harder for those things than any other and even in a losing cause, a truism which history has shown over and over again in wars down the ages.

    • Many of them also aspired to be slaveowners, and hoped that a victory would help them improve their socioeconomic status. The plantations of the Old South were run like modern leftist cities, so men who were tied into that economic world saw more slavery as the way to rise the ladder.

  20. JESUS IS KING 👑.
    GOD created the world but satan runs it for now, in the end he loses. I pray for our nation, the fight for Southern Independence should have been left alone. To this day we are still 2 nation’s inside of one. I still believe we should separate because history is repeating itself today. With a family working 2-3 job’s and still nothing to show for it, modern day slavery. It’s sad, democraps (demo) blowing our great nation apart. And people are still blind with everything going on, but this is the devil’s playground. If y’all get a chance listen to Paul Harvey – If I were the devil. Before they take it off and folk start getting wise. Anyway remember Jesus is our savior, if you don’t know him ask him to come in your heart and confess that you are a sinner and Jesus Christ is Lord. Jesus died for our sins so we may live forever with him( Our spiritual bodies) and just pray these things. Have a great day and God bless.

    Sic Semper Tyrannis!!!
    Bury me in Southern ground

  21. The Lost Cause is simping up to the left. The Confederacy was not fighting for liberty, they were fighting to permanently enshrine slavery. Every economic and cultural argument for secession was based on the difference between slave states and free states. The articles of secession said it was for slavery, and speeches such as the “Cornerstone Speech” affirmed this. It wasn’t until after the Confederate leftists lost (and the blacks didn’t massacre the whites) that they began pretending they were (like so many communist revolutionaries).

    Far from being libertarian, the Confederacy was manned by collectivists and practiced leftist mob rule and censorship of anyone who questioned the Mohammedan institution of slavery. Men from the mountainous regions of the South overwhelmingly opposed secession, and were repeatedly threatened with lynching if they didn’t go along. West Virginia/North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee were hotbeds of anti-secessionism, and 180,000 white (plus 175,000 black) southerners fought for the Union. Far from a foreign invasion, the civil war was a war for the soul of the South. After the war, the KKK was formed from ex-Confederate veterans who waged an insurgency like the Viet Cong, and it was only the efforts of a few republican state governors who managed to get the states to ratify the 13th-15th Amendments, forcing them to at least pretend to follow the law while cheating on the side like leftists do.

    Furthermore, Lincoln is not responsible for the present bloat in government. This honor belongs to Woodrow Wilson, who helped revive the KKK in 1915 and was a progressive (the KKK also sided with the Mexican Bolsheviks in the Cristero War). Before the war, the biggest government department was the post office. After the war, it was the post office. Lincoln did not have nearly as much personal power over his turf as Jefferson Davis did- the Confederacy had no checks or balances.

    Simping up to the left doesn’t do us any favors, and allows them to erase their own dirty past by claiming it is our own. Imagine if South Koreans flew the North Korean flag, pledged allegiance to it alongside the South Korean one, and put up statues of Kim Jong Il and Mao Tse-Tung, claiming it was “their heritage of freedom fighters.” You’d think they were nuts.

  22. Slavery was still legal in at least one state of the Union (NJ), and it seems to me that although slavery was a miasma floating aound the Civil War like a stink bomb, the real issue was the legality (or otherwise) of the Northern aggression.

    Lincoln exploited a hole in the Constitution, he interpreted the lack of a secession pathway, or the explicit definition of the legality of secession at all as an excuse to invade.

    The economy of the South was built around slavery, and to abolish slavery was to destroy the South’s economy (much as the British did in South Africa and which led eventually to the great trek and the two Boer Wars)

    When the Northern states abolished their own slavery, it was done over a period of decades (if at all) so their econmies were gently nursed out of dependancy on slavery. Lincoln knew the damagge abolition would do, especially the consequences to ‘liberated’ slaves unable to support themselves.

    It was sheer folly to invade, the effectiveness of the minie ball rifle was probably ignored (or the politicians were unaware) and the death tolls were probably grossly underestimated and unexpected.

    Lee showed restraint, Lincoln did not.

    • Several slave states did not secede, yet the Confederacy had no qualms about invading and trying to annex them. Kentucky, Missouri, and Maryland were targets for the three major Confederate invasions in 1862.

      The notion that the north was the aggressor is false because the North did not start the war. The Confederacy did when they attacked Fort Sumter. Lincoln showed extraordinary restraint by not violating Kentucky’s neutrality (the reckless Confederates invaded first), and only called for a small force of volunteers to suppress the rebellion, not total mobilization like the Confederacy instituted. If Lincoln had done any less, he would have been an impotent leader.

      Abolition of slavery was like gangrene; the northern states got rid of it before it required amputation, while the Confederates sought to constantly expand it. Expansion of slavery was un-American, and Lincoln favored compensation for former slaveowners. But the Confederacy would have none of it. They spent the 1850s trying to conquer South American countries and apply for statehood as slave states.

      A better analogy for the Civil War would be the war against Japan: both conflicts were started by the smaller nation (both in terms of population and economy), the smaller one believed its racial purity made them superior soldiers, and consequently sent its youth to die by charging into the muzzles of American guns.

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