Still too many people misrepresenting history
Concerning Confererate iconography and militant racial ideologies:
As memory is selective, history is twisted into warped agendas. When my mother was born 80 year old Civil War veterans were being revered as that era’s “greatest generation.” Bloody events were mythologized and villains depicted as heroes. Malignant mythologizers promoted a Confederate revanchist culture that was constructing statues of treasonous characters and their vile deeds about the country. They established in the popular imagination a twisted version of reality that belongs in museums, but still has active proponents.
The then primitive science of anthropology featured aberrant teachings, such as “scientific racism”, that held skin color to be indicative of a people’s place on the evolutionary scale, with ‘guess who?’ at top and bottom. The writings of Franz Boaz and others who saw race as an ill informed construct, rather than an objective feature of the universe, were new and in contention for their place in the academic firmament. By the time I encountered the concept of race as a construct in 1964, it had emerged from the period of Nazi and other ethno-quackery to dominate the discipline, and remains the academic orthodoxy today, though quarantined in learned quarters.
Now, a time in which there can be no reasonable explanation for sixth graders not understanding race as a marginally useful genetic absurdity, or seeing the early 20th century Confederate revival as historically valid, great numbers of adults still consider these visions as basic reality and the way things are. Popular discussions of race remain astoundingly primitive and lacking the basic knowledge to yield sound conclusions. How can we allow the misrepresentation of history by allowing confederate iconography to remain standing outside museums of bigotry or passively tolerate public display of malignant ideologies again on the march without challenge?
Bob Greene C.P.C.