I’m a “Yankee.” During my military career, I spent time in the South and with guys from the South while I’m a “Yankee.” During my military career, I spent time in the South and with guys from the South while serving overseas. I found it amusing that many would repeat the phrase, “The South shall rise again.” I’m not sure what they meant by that, but surely they couldn’t believe they would bring slavery back.
They deluded themselves into believing the Civil War was about states’ rights but the only states’ right it was about was preserving slavery. Anyone who doesn’t believe the Civil War was about slavery should read the secession documents of the Southern states. The intent was clear in writing. From the 1890s to the 1920s, Southern states erected more than 38,000 monuments to the Confederacy in an attempt to rewrite history. The only ones they were fooling were themselves.
Robert E. Lee took the same oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, as I did when I joined the United States Army. My oath survives my military retirement. Lee apparently believed his oath did not survive his resignation. He betrayed that oath and became a deserter as did the other United States Army officers and soldiers who left to fight for the South. The oath he betrayed was not to the Commonwealth of Virginia but to the United States of America.
Jefferson Davis and the wealthy southern landowners duped the poor, and working class of the South into fighting for their economic benefit. But it gets worse than that.
An honorable leader will do what is for the good of his people and yet, when the war was lost at Gettysburg in July 1863, they fought on. Out supplied, out maned, out gunned, they fought on and allowed for the total destruction of the South.
As Hitler allowed for the total destruction of Germany, and Japan did not surrender after the first atomic bomb, they refused to face reality, fighting on out of pride, and greed as hundreds of thousands more died. Only when Jefferson Davis and the leaders in Richmond were imperiled did they surrender to save their own skins.
I don’t care if the South wishes to keep their monuments to these people. They betrayed the United States and well as the people of the South. I would honor the soldiers who fought but not the leaders who betrayed their efforts. I do not want any Confederate monument on federal property. What states do is their own business. Get rid of the fake history and teach the truth to our children. Let them do what they wish with these “monuments.”
Editor’s note: this has been reprinted with the author’s permission, and has been edited for clarity and originally appeared here.