Open rebellion?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by DearthnVader, Aug 17, 2017.

  1. DearthnVader macrumors 6502

    DearthnVader

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    #1
    One of the surest signs of rebellion is when a society starts toppling statues. Right now, it's just statues of Confederates, but where does it end?

    Do we topple the statues of Washington, Jefferson, and General Jackson?

    Do we rename all the places named after them?

    Do we tare down the White House because slaves helped to build it?

    Do we tare up the Constitution because it helped support slavery?
     
  2. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #2

    There's no slope - http://reason.com/blog/2017/08/16/baltimore-officials-successfully-identif
     
  3. Volgin Suspended

    Volgin

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    #3
    It's a dangerous time for sure. The biggest problem is most people don't understand their own history. Lincoln offered Lee the leadership of the entire Union army. Lee turned it down because his state just voted to secede and Lee didn't want to draw his sword against his own statesmen. His choice had nothing to do with maintaining slavery.

    No one alive today was ever a slave, and no one is proposing that we reinstitute slavery. So why are people still talking about it? It's been 150 years. The news were in bondage for 400 years, but they don't still gripe about it.
     
  4. DearthnVader thread starter macrumors 6502

    DearthnVader

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    #4
  5. elistan, Aug 17, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2017

    elistan macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    New Orleans mayor Mitch Landrieu in May 2017:

    Thank you for coming.

    The soul of our beloved City is deeply rooted in a history that has evolved over thousands of years; rooted in a diverse people who have been here together every step of the way – for both good and for ill.

    It is a history that holds in its heart the stories of Native Americans: the Choctaw, Houma Nation, the Chitimacha. Of Hernando de Soto, Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle, the Acadians, the Islenos, the enslaved people from Senegambia, Free People of Color, the Haitians, the Germans, both the empires of Francexii and Spain. The Italians, the Irish, the Cubans, the south and central Americans, the Vietnamese and so many more.

    You see: New Orleans is truly a city of many nations, a melting pot, a bubbling cauldron of many cultures.

    There is no other place quite like it in the world that so eloquently exemplifies the uniquely American motto: e pluribus unum — out of many we are one.

    But there are also other truths about our city that we must confront. New Orleans was America’s largest slave market: a port where hundreds of thousands of souls were brought, sold and shipped up the Mississippi River to lives of forced labor of misery of rape, of torture.

    America was the place where nearly 4,000 of our fellow citizens were lynched, 540 alone in Louisiana; where the courts enshrined ‘separate but equal’; where Freedom riders coming to New Orleans were beaten to a bloody pulp.

    So when people say to me that the monuments in question are history, well what I just described is real history as well, and it is the searing truth.

    And it immediately begs the questions: why there are no slave ship monuments, no prominent markers on public land to remember the lynchings or the slave blocks; nothing to remember this long chapter of our lives; the pain, the sacrifice, the shame … all of it happening on the soil of New Orleans.

    So for those self-appointed defenders of history and the monuments, they are eerily silent on what amounts to this historical malfeasance, a lie by omission.

    There is a difference between remembrance of history and reverence of it. For America and New Orleans, it has been a long, winding road, marked by great tragedy and great triumph. But we cannot be afraid of our truth.

    As President George W. Bush said at the dedication ceremony for the National Museum of African American History & Culture, “A great nation does not hide its history. It faces its flaws and corrects them.”

    So today I want to speak about why we chose to remove these four monuments to the Lost Cause of the Confederacy, but also how and why this process can move us towards healing and understanding of each other.

    So, let’s start with the facts.

    The historic record is clear: the Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis, and P.G.T. Beauregard statues were not erected just to honor these men, but as part of the movement which became known as The Cult of the Lost Cause. This ‘cult’ had one goal — through monuments and through other means — to rewrite history to hide the truth, which is that the Confederacy was on the wrong side of humanity.

    First erected over 166 years after the founding of our city and 19 years after the end of the Civil War, the monuments that we took down were meant to rebrand the history of our city and the ideals of a defeated Confederacy.

    It is self-evident that these men did not fight for the United States of America. They fought against it. They may have been warriors, but in this cause they were not patriots.

    These statues are not just stone and metal. They are not just innocent remembrances of a benign history. These monuments purposefully celebrate a fictional, sanitized Confederacy; ignoring the death, ignoring the enslavement, and the terror that it actually stood for.

    After the Civil War, these statues were a part of that terrorism as much as a burning cross on someone’s lawn; they were erected purposefully to send a strong message to all who walked in their shadows about who was still in charge in this city.

    Should you have further doubt about the true goals of the Confederacy, in the very weeks before the war broke out, the Vice President of the Confederacy, Alexander Stephens, made it clear that the Confederate cause was about maintaining slavery and white supremacy.

    He said in his now famous ‘Cornerstone speech’ that the Confederacy’s “cornerstone rests upon the great truth, that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery — subordination to the superior race — is his natural and normal condition. This, our new government, is the first, in the history of the world, based upon this great physical, philosophical, and moral truth.”

    Now, with these shocking words still ringing in your ears, I want to try to gently peel from your hands the grip on a false narrative of our history that I think weakens us and make straight a wrong turn we made many years ago so we can more closely connect with integrity to the founding principles of our nation and forge a clearer and straighter path toward a better city and more perfect union.

    Last year, President Barack Obama echoed these sentiments about the need to contextualize and remember all of our history. He recalled a piece of stone, a slave auction block engraved with a marker commemorating a single moment in 1830 when Andrew Jackson and Henry Clay stood and spoke from it.

    President Obama said, “Consider what this artifact tells us about history … on a stone where day after day for years, men and women … bound and bought and sold and bid like cattle on a stone worn down by the tragedy of over a thousand bare feet. For a long time the only thing we considered important, the singular thing we once chose to commemorate as history with a plaque were the unmemorable speeches of two powerful men.”

    A piece of stone – one stone. Both stories were history. One story told. One story forgotten or maybe even purposefully ignored.

    As clear as it is for me today … for a long time, even though I grew up in one of New Orleans’ most diverse neighborhoods, even with my family’s long proud history of fighting for civil rights … I must have passed by those monuments a million times without giving them a second thought.

    So I am not judging anybody, I am not judging people. We all take our own journey on race. I just hope people listen like I did when my dear friend Wynton Marsalis helped me see the truth. He asked me to think about all the people who have left New Orleans because of our exclusionary attitudes.

    Another friend asked me to consider these four monuments from the perspective of an African American mother or father trying to explain to their fifth grade daughter who Robert E. Lee is and why he stands atop of our beautiful city. Can you do it?

    Can you look into that young girl’s eyes and convince her that Robert E. Lee is there to encourage her? Do you think she will feel inspired and hopeful by that story? Do these monuments help her see a future with limitless potential? Have you ever thought that if her potential is limited, yours and mine are too?

    We all know the answer to these very simple questions.

    When you look into this child’s eyes is the moment when the searing truth comes into focus for us. This is the moment when we know what is right and what we must do. We can’t walk away from this truth.

    And I knew that taking down the monuments was going to be tough, but you elected me to do the right thing, not the easy thing and this is what that looks like. So relocating these Confederate monuments is not about taking something away from someone else. This is not about politics, this is not about blame or retaliation. This is not a naïve quest to solve all our problems at once.

    This is, however, about showing the whole world that we as a city and as a people are able to acknowledge, understand, reconcile and, most importantly, choose a better future for ourselves, making straight what has been crooked and making right what was wrong.

    Otherwise, we will continue to pay a price with discord, with division, and yes, with violence.

    To literally put the confederacy on a pedestal in our most prominent places of honor is an inaccurate recitation of our full past, it is an affront to our present, and it is a bad prescription for our future.

    History cannot be changed. It cannot be moved like a statue. What is done is done. The Civil War is over, and the Confederacy lost and we are better for it. Surely we are far enough removed from this dark time to acknowledge that the cause of the Confederacy was wrong.

    And in the second decade of the 21st century, asking African Americans — or anyone else — to drive by property that they own; occupied by reverential statues of men who fought to destroy the country and deny that person’s humanity seems perverse and absurd.

    Centuries-old wounds are still raw because they never healed right in the first place.

    Here is the essential truth: we are better together than we are apart. Indivisibility is our essence. Isn’t this the gift that the people of New Orleans have given to the world?

    We radiate beauty and grace in our food, in our music, in our architecture, in our joy of life, in our celebration of death; in everything that we do. We gave the world this funky thing called jazz; the most uniquely American art form that is developed across the ages from different cultures.

    Think about second lines, think about Mardi Gras, think about muffaletta, think about the Saints, gumbo, red beans and rice. By God, just think. All we hold dear is created by throwing everything in the pot; creating, producing something better; everything a product of our historic diversity.

    We are proof that out of many we are one — and better for it! Out of many we are one — and we really do love it!

    And yet, we still seem to find so many excuses for not doing the right thing. Again, remember President Bush’s words, “A great nation does not hide its history. It faces its flaws and corrects them.”

    We forget, we deny how much we really depend on each other, how much we need each other. We justify our silence and inaction by manufacturing noble causes that marinate in historical denial. We still find a way to say “wait, not so fast.”

    But like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “wait has almost always meant never.”

    We can’t wait any longer. We need to change. And we need to change now. No more waiting. This is not just about statues, this is about our attitudes and behavior as well. If we take these statues down and don’t change to become a more open and inclusive society this would have all been in vain.

    While some have driven by these monuments every day and either revered their beauty or failed to see them at all, many of our neighbors and fellow Americans see them very clearly. Many are painfully aware of the long shadows their presence casts, not only literally but figuratively. And they clearly receive the message that the Confederacy and the cult of the lost cause intended to deliver.

    Earlier this week, as the cult of the lost cause statue of P.G.T Beauregard came down, world renowned musician Terence Blanchard stood watch, his wife Robin and their two beautiful daughters at their side.

    Terence went to a high school on the edge of City Park named after one of America’s greatest heroes and patriots, John F. Kennedy. But to get there he had to pass by this monument to a man who fought to deny him his humanity.

    He said, “I’ve never looked at them as a source of pride … it’s always made me feel as if they were put there by people who don’t respect us. This is something I never thought I’d see in my lifetime. It’s a sign that the world is changing.”

    Yes, Terence, it is, and it is long overdue.

    Now is the time to send a new message to the next generation of New Orleanians who can follow in Terence and Robin’s remarkable footsteps.

    A message about the future, about the next 300 years and beyond; let us not miss this opportunity New Orleans and let us help the rest of the country do the same. Because now is the time for choosing. Now is the time to actually make this the City we always should have been, had we gotten it right in the first place.

    We should stop for a moment and ask ourselves — at this point in our history, after Katrina, after Rita, after Ike, after Gustav, after the national recession, after the BP oil catastrophe and after the tornado — if presented with the opportunity to build monuments that told our story or to curate these particular spaces … would these monuments be what we want the world to see? Is this really our story?

    We have not erased history; we are becoming part of the city’s history by righting the wrong image these monuments represent and crafting a better, more complete future for all our children and for future generations.

    And unlike when these Confederate monuments were first erected as symbols of white supremacy, we now have a chance to create not only new symbols, but to do it together, as one people.

    In our blessed land we all come to the table of democracy as equals.

    We have to reaffirm our commitment to a future where each citizen is guaranteed the uniquely American gifts of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

    That is what really makes America great and today it is more important than ever to hold fast to these values and together say a self-evident truth that out of many we are one. That is why today we reclaim these spaces for the United States of America.

    Because we are one nation, not two; indivisible with liberty and justice for all, not some. We all are part of one nation, all pledging allegiance to one flag, the flag of the United States of America. And New Orleanians are in, all of the way.

    It is in this union and in this truth that real patriotism is rooted and flourishes.

    Instead of revering a 4-year brief historical aberration that was called the Confederacy we can celebrate all 300 years of our rich, diverse history as a place named New Orleans and set the tone for the next 300 years.

    After decades of public debate, of anger, of anxiety, of anticipation, of humiliation and of frustration. After public hearings and approvals from three separate community led commissions. After two robust public hearings and a 6-1 vote by the duly elected New Orleans City Council. After review by 13 different federal and state judges. The full weight of the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government has been brought to bear and the monuments in accordance with the law have been removed.

    So now is the time to come together and heal and focus on our larger task. Not only building new symbols, but making this city a beautiful manifestation of what is possible and what we as a people can become.

    Let us remember what the once exiled, imprisoned and now universally loved Nelson Mandela and what he said after the fall of apartheid. “If the pain has often been unbearable and the revelations shocking to all of us, it is because they indeed bring us the beginnings of a common understanding of what happened and a steady restoration of the nation’s humanity.”

    So before we part let us again state the truth clearly.

    The Confederacy was on the wrong side of history and humanity. It sought to tear apart our nation and subjugate our fellow Americans to slavery. This is the history we should never forget and one that we should never again put on a pedestal to be revered.

    As a community, we must recognize the significance of removing New Orleans’ Confederate monuments. It is our acknowledgment that now is the time to take stock of, and then move past, a painful part of our history. Anything less would render generations of courageous struggle and soul-searching a truly lost cause.

    Anything less would fall short of the immortal words of our greatest President Abraham Lincoln, who with an open heart and clarity of purpose calls on us today to unite as one people when he said:

    “With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation’s wounds, to do all which may achieve and cherish: a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.”

    Thank you.
     
  6. Volgin Suspended

    Volgin

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    #6
    I don't think you are allowed to post the entire article like that.
     
  7. JayMysterio macrumors 6502

    JayMysterio

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    #7
    I am pretty sure he can, and glad he did. It's very eloquent.
     
  8. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

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    #8
    Actually, people at that rally on Saturday were talking about ethnic cleansing. And carrying swastikas. And held a torch-light parade Friday night. And I think World War II is not so long ago that everybody has already forgotten about it.
     
  9. Volgin Suspended

    Volgin

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    #9
    You CAN do lots of things that violate the forums rules (insulting, threatening, etc). It doesn't mean you should.
     
  10. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

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    #10
    There are regulations about posting entire articles, yes. But a public speech, no. The quoted text was entirely made up of the public speech.
     
  11. Volgin Suspended

    Volgin

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    #11
    Wether you like it or not it's protected. I find Louis Farrakhan and Rev Wright to be equally appalling.
    --- Post Merged, Aug 17, 2017 ---
    The speech encompasses the entirety of the article, and as such is a violation.
     
  12. LIVEFRMNYC macrumors 604

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    #12
    Toppling statues is better than toppling humans. ***Message***
     
  13. DearthnVader thread starter macrumors 6502

    DearthnVader

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    #13
    A little rebellion can be a good thing, Jefferson believed it was a necessary thing. If the worst thing that happens is a few statues of some old racist bastards get torn down we will have escaped the "blood of patriots and tyrants alike".

    I'm just trying to say, we've got a lot of old racist bastards in our history, and their monuments stand in as much as a warning of what happens when diplomacy fails, and when we do not live up to the ideals that founded this nation, as anything else does.
     
  14. nebo1ss macrumors 68030

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    #14
    Hi Donald is that you?
     
  15. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

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    #15
    So, if he got the text from a different source, it would be fine? I don't think it works that way.
     
  16. JayMysterio macrumors 6502

    JayMysterio

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    #16
    I've gotten little reminders for things others have done and got away with. So maybe you're right. That wasn't one of those times. Know what is supposedly against forum rules, stating something & when asked to provide support, not doing so and continuing on.
     
  17. VulchR macrumors 68020

    VulchR

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    #17

    What we do to statues doesn't worry me (although I think statues praises the Confederacy should be moved to museums). What worries me is the level of anger, disrespect and lack of polite discourse we have with each other. I try not to get drawn into it, but like many people I occasionally loose perspective. I wish we could get back to a more harmonious US.

    If you are worried about rebellion, then you should focus not on the extreme right- and left-wings of politics, but the core problem: inequality of wealth, opportunity and power. If people feel a system does not work to their advantage, and never will, then they begin to dismantle that system, sometimes violently. I fear we might be starting down that road.
     
  18. JayMysterio macrumors 6502

    JayMysterio

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    #18
    I covered it in another thread about the Lee statue, but basically it isn't about destroying anything & everything about slavery. It's about getting rid of things that perpetuate 'the Lost Cause' narrative.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lost_Cause_of_the_Confederacy

    The Lost Cause of the Confederacy, or simply Lost Cause, is a set of beliefs that describes the Confederate cause as a heroic one against great odds despite its defeat. The beliefs endorse the virtues of the antebellum South, viewing the American Civil War as an honorable struggle for the Southern way of life,[1] while minimizing or denying the central role of slavery. While it was not taught in the North, aspects of it did win acceptance there and helped the process of reunifying American whites.

    Yale University history professor Rollin G. Osterweis summarizes the content that pervaded "Lost Cause" writings:

    The Legend of the Lost Cause began as mostly a literary expression of the despair of a bitter, defeated people over a lost identity. It was a landscape dotted with figures drawn mainly out of the past: the chivalric planter; the magnolia-scented Southern belle; the good, gray Confederate veteran, once a knight of the field and saddle; and obliging old Uncle Remus. All these, while quickly enveloped in a golden haze, became very real to the people of the South, who found the symbols useful in the reconstituting of their shattered civilization. They perpetuated the ideals of the Old South and brought a sense of comfort to the New.[2]

    The Lost Cause belief system synthesized numerous ideas into a coherent package. Lost Cause supporters argue that slavery was not the main cause of the Civil War, and claim that few scholars saw it as such before the 1950s.[3] In order to reach this conclusion, they often deny or minimize the writings and speeches of Confederate leaders of the time in favor of later-written revisionist documents.[4] Supporters often stressed the idea of secession as a defense against a Northern threat to their way of life and say that threat violated the states' rights guaranteed by the Union. They believed any state had the right to secede, a point strongly denied by the North. The Lost Cause portrayed the South as more profoundly Christian than the greedy North. It portrayed the slavery system as more benevolent than cruel, emphasizing that it taught Christianity and civilization. In explaining Confederate defeat, the Lost Cause said the main factor was not qualitative inferiority in leadership or fighting ability but the massive quantitative superiority of the Yankee industrial machine.[5]
     
  19. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

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    #19
    Speaking of open rebellion, Politico has a timely article out now describing how the various militia movements in the US are gravitating towards supporting the various white supremacist movements. These are the guys who were wearing fatigues and carrying automatic rifles in Charlottesville. From the article:

    Not long after James Fields—a white nationalist who had posted an image of Donald Trump as king on his Facebook account—allegedly killed Heather Heyer with his Dodge Challenger, protesters linked arms along one of Charlottesville’s sidewalks. Three feet away, a line of men stood in camo pants and tactical vests, all carrying long rifles. The men were not police, whose job was to prevent violent confrontations but who largely stood to the side during the melee. They were militia-men, who had gathered in Charlottesville to act, as one expert on anti-government extremism said, as a “third force”—as a peace-keeping buffer, in theory, between far-right agitators and their opponents.

    Despite the militias’ public statements of neutrality, evidence has mounted over the past six months that the militias have gravitated decisively toward one side in the street battles that have played out recently in cities across the country. Indeed, during these first months of Trump’s presidency, these loose-knit organizations making up America’s militia movement are losing their anti-government ideological purity as they grow increasingly close with a segment of the right-wing from which many in the recent past had generally kept their distance. Their presence as a private security force for an increasingly public coalition of white nationalist factions—Ku Klux Klan followers, neo-Nazis, and alt-right supporters—has transformed a movement that has already demonstrated a willingness to threaten violence.​

    http://www.politico.com/magazine/st...cists-militias-private-police-215498?lo=ap_b1

    The full article is well worth a read.
     
  20. DearthnVader thread starter macrumors 6502

    DearthnVader

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    #20
    It is to be regretted that the rich and powerful too often bend the acts of government to their selfish purposes. Distinctions in society will always exist under every just government. Equality of talents, of education, or of wealth can not be produced by human institutions. In the full enjoyment of the gifts of Heaven and the fruits of superior industry, economy, and virtue, every man is equally entitled to protection by law; but when the laws undertake to add to these natural and just advantages artificial distinctions, to grant titles, gratuities, and exclusive privileges, to make the rich richer and the potent more powerful, the humble members of society-the farmers, mechanics, and laborers-who have neither the time nor the means of securing like favors to themselves, have a right to complain of the injustice of their Government. There are no necessary evils in government. Its evils exist only in its abuses. If it would confine itself to equal protection, and, as Heaven does its rains, shower its favors alike on the high and the low, the rich and the poor, it would be an unqualified blessing.

    When we tear down all the statues of General Jackson, and teach that he was nothing but a genocidal maniac that forced native Americans off their lands and killed them. Then who will care what else he did, who will find wisdom in his words.

    History is not black and white, you can't judge people by the popular and politically correct morals of today. You must judge them by the morality of the day when they lived.
     
  21. Volgin Suspended

    Volgin

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    #21
    It's still protected.
     
  22. jeyf macrumors 6502

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    #22
    America cant seem to move forward on social issues. Just you hear the junk over and over, repeated by a small 10% level of the population. For example; abortion.

    It seems every generation has a distraction, a new monster under their beds at night; like communism and than now terrorists.
     
  23. samcraig macrumors P6

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    #23
    You can and have an obligation to do both.
     
  24. BoxerGT2.5 macrumors 68000

    BoxerGT2.5

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    #24
    Send the bulldozers into DC, then start defacing half of Mt. Rushmore. You cannot judge historical figures bases on today's norms/values. Otherwise we have no history. In Chicago we have Balbo Monument given to the city in the 30's from Mussolini, do we tear that down as well?
     
  25. samcraig macrumors P6

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    #25
    Yes - we destroy everything because we're hysterical. :rolleyes:
     

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