Today marks the start of Confederate Heritage Month. April was originally chosen because Confederate Memorial Day is usually celebrated during the month. Seven Southern states (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas and Virginia) historically designated the month as a time to honor their Confederate ancestors, but due to recent racial climates, some states have rescinded from acknowledging this designation. Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant recently signed a declaration proclaiming April as Confederate Heritage Month.
This designation has been in place for years, but this year, it has become even more controversial, due to the murderous rampage of one lunatic who shot innocent black church goers and had the audacity to wave the Confederate flag beforehand. Since then, the media circus has decided to blame the Confederate battle flag for this atrocity. The hysteria has spread to attacking monuments and other artifacts honoring Confederate veterans and heroes, some of which have been in existence for over a century. Is it a scapegoat, or a sign of the times of how dumbed down this society has become?
Let me set the record straight. Confederate soldiers did not fight to preserve slavery. Most could have cared less. They were fighting to save their homes. The war became an issue of slavery only after President Lincoln knew the North was losing the war and decided to make it about a moral issue. In other words, it was about politics. Those statues you see of General Lee, Jefferson Davis and Nathan Bedford Forrest are there to honor the men who tried in vain to preserve the Confederacy. Forrest’s ex-slaves so adored him that they fought under his leadership. Lee set his inherited slaves free prior to the war. And Davis never wanted to become president of the Confederacy because he had the foresight to see the bloodbath that was about to happen. They all fought in honor of the South.
In lieu of the assaults now taking place on Confederate flags, memorials, and monuments, I would like to stress that these items do not belong in dusty museums, hidden away from the modern world. They also do not belong to random citizens who think they have the right to vandalize them. These are memorials to America’s war veterans. Sorry if some don’t agree with what they perceive was the reason for the war. I don’t agree with every reason this country has ever gotten involved in a war or conflict, but you don’t see me spray painting the Vietnam Wall or the Korean War Memorial (BTW, my father was a veteran of that war). Compassion, understanding and knowledge are what is needed to accept why soldiers fought for the Confederacy. Times have changed. We must take that into account in order to comprehend what they believed in and realize how honorable they truly were.