Sunday, December 22, 2013

"Miami Herald" columnist reviews racist past of some Confederate memorials and the lunatic fringe that defends them.

This column by Fred Grimm of the Miami Herald explains the racist back ground of some monuments and memorials in Florida and Georgia and the lunatic fringe that continues to defend them.

This is an excerpt from the column:

The day after Thanksgiving, Georgia state workers outraged southerners nostalgic for segregation by quietly moving the 12-feet-tall bronze statue of white supremacist Tom Watson from the capitol grounds to a nearby park. At the turn of the last century, the Georgia congressman whipped up white voters with vicious, hateful, lunatic diatribes against blacks, Catholics, Jews (“thick-lipped rakes who glut their eyes upon handsome Gentile women.”) His newspaper argued that lynching blacks should be legal. That blacks should not be allowed to vote. He was among the Georgia politicians responsible for the infamous 1915 Atlanta lynching of a Jewish factory worker, Leo Frank, on the flimsy evidence that this “member of the Yankee Jewish aristocracy,” as Watson called him, had raped and murdered a 13-year-old Anglo girl.
Yet, Watson has his admirers, who were aghast to discover that his statue, with the inscription, “defender of right,” had been relocated down the street. Georgia State Rep. Tommy Benton denounced Georgia’s surrender to “political correctness.” Benton introduced a bill that would outlaw moving historic monuments, arguing that “if you start taking down every monument because you find one or two things you don't particularly like about that person, there won't be any monuments left.” Though even a middling historian could count more than one or two things not to like about Tom Watson.
What is interesting about this column is that Grimm is not representing the issue as it was done frequently in the past by the media. In the past the media would represent the issue as if there was no objective historical record and that there was just a lot of different view points. Or they would say that in the interest of peace or general public good feeling that the monument should be moved or the flag changed, and emphasize that they have Confederate ancestors too and as Southern as the next person. They would not condemn the Confederacy, just plea for public harmony.

Grimm has none of this nonsense. The monuments, flags and the Confederacy, and Tom Watson are bad, and the excuses made for the Confederacy and people like Tom Watson is just rationalizing nonsense.

The attitude towards the Confederacy is shifting.

Read more here:

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