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A Moratorium on Moving Metal Men?

 

Once again, a violent riot ensued today over removal of a statue of the long-departed Robert E. Lee. A statue: a block, a stone, a worse than senseless thing–has been the cause of injury and death.

I propose a policy, nationwide, that we let these metal men stand where they’re planted. They can take eggs, tomatoes and excrement in the face without blinking their metal eyes. Their mounts won’t kick or rear if their flanks are spray-painted with obscenities. Kill’em over and over, clean ’em up and do it again. It’s better than hurting your fellow Americans.

Because the point about ’em is: they were here. They are a part of our history. There are people in Charlottesville whose grandparents fought in the Civil War.

Are we still allowed to have statues of Lincoln? To read the Gettysburg Address, you’d think the “great civil war” was “great” not only in scope, but in the sense of “momentous”. The nation had been “brought forth” on this continent–but whither now? The war was a test, a trial of destiny.

People sometimes say, disparagingly, that the US was the only nation that had to fight a civil war to get rid of slavery.

That’s because the practice was instituted here by the colonizing nations: England, France, Spain, the Netherlands, who did not import it into their homelands, and who were able to leave the issue and the slaves behind, on our soil, when they pulled out of their colonies.

The fact that so many of us died fighting for freedom is something we should all be proud of.

Slavery had held us back. Under the sharecropper system after the Civil War (63% whites, 100% freemen) we grew more cotton than ever before. We bankrupted Egypt.

Lee was on the wrong side, whatever his personal qualities.

But he was part of that great trial by fire, testing whether this nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated could long endure.

Leave him and the other metal men in place, to remind us that we passed that test.

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  1. Profile photo of Judge Mental Member

    I think the most immediately helpful change would be a moratorium on counter protests.

    • #1
    • August 12, 2017 at 4:33 pm
    • Like11 likes
  2. Profile photo of MLH Member
    MLH

    The men of metal had so much mettle.

    • #2
    • August 12, 2017 at 4:46 pm
    • Like11 likes
  3. Profile photo of Hypatia Member
    Hypatia Post author

    I agree, @judgemental! I’m striving for an elegiac tone here–but,

    if it turns out the driver of the death car was on the Right–

    well, finally! Some violence the Left can condemn.

    Gee-Hodgkinson’s murder spree was less than two months ago. Do you think this incident will drop outta the news as fast as that one did? That depends entirely upon the driver’s persuasions.

    • #3
    • August 12, 2017 at 4:50 pm
    • Like8 likes
  4. Profile photo of Bryan G. Stephens Reagan

    Rewriting history is an action of the left. Lee did not throw the nation into a real civil war of the normal type, but went home. He was a great man for that.

    • #4
    • August 12, 2017 at 5:40 pm
    • Like20 likes
  5. Profile photo of GLDIII Reagan

    Those who chose to erase their history are doomed to repeat it, only this time the irony will be much greater, because we should have known better second time around.

    • #5
    • August 12, 2017 at 5:41 pm
    • Like11 likes
  6. Profile photo of RightAngles Member

    This is a repeat of the old Soviet purges. Anything that happened in history that you don’t like? Erase it. The Confederacy had a great man as one of its heroes? Knock him down and erase him. Don’t teach the children about him. Then all we have left is slavery, the part the Left likes because it’s bad.

    • #6
    • August 12, 2017 at 5:50 pm
    • Like22 likes
  7. Profile photo of Mike LaRoche Thatcher

    Those who are pushing for the removal of Confederate statues are America’s home-grown version of the Khmer Rouge.

    • #7
    • August 12, 2017 at 5:52 pm
    • Like17 likes
  8. Profile photo of Jimmy Carter Member

    So, They must be removing Robert Byrd‘s name from every conceivable structure, Right? Right?

    • #8
    • August 12, 2017 at 6:07 pm
    • Like17 likes
  9. Profile photo of Kevin Schulte Member

    These statues are about principle. If the left is aloud to abolish them, it will only increase there hunger for the next thing. The next thing will be to sand blast God off of the monuments in Washington. They will never stop unless we stop them.

    • #9
    • August 12, 2017 at 6:29 pm
    • Like16 likes
  10. Profile photo of skipsul Moderator

    RightAngles (View Comment):
    This is a repeat of the old Soviet purges. Anything that happened in history that you don’t like? Erase it. The Confederacy had a great man as one of its heroes? Knock him down and erase him. Don’t teach the children about him. Then all we have left is slavery, the part the Left likes because it’s bad.

    Sad but true. No context, no nuance, no recognition of why we had to fight the war, nor how complicated it really was.

    • #10
    • August 12, 2017 at 8:08 pm
    • Like4 likes
  11. Profile photo of Valiuth Member

    So I haven’t, paid any attention to this story being busy with other things. Are people trying to unlawfully remove the statue? Who owns it? Or is the status removal being debated and people in Charlotte just don’t know how to use their words when discussing the matter?

    • #11
    • August 12, 2017 at 9:02 pm
    • LikeLike
  12. Profile photo of Henry Castaigne Member

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):
    Bryan G. Stephens

    Rewriting history is an action of the left. Lee did not throw the nation into a real civil war of the normal type, but went home. He was a great man for that.

    Please explain. I know that he surrendered and Grant never said a bad word about him but I don’t know more beyond that.

    • #12
    • August 13, 2017 at 12:55 am
    • LikeLike
  13. Profile photo of Randy Webster Member

    Valiuth (View Comment):
    So I haven’t, paid any attention to this story being busy with other things. Are people trying to unlawfully remove the statue? Who owns it? Or is the status removal being debated and people in Charlotte just don’t know how to use their words when discussing the matter?

    For starters, it’s Charlottesville, not Charlotte. One is sort of a sleepy college town; the other rivals Atlanta as a booming southern metropolis. One’s in Virginia, and one’s in North Carolina. My guess is that the Charlottesville police department doesn’t have the manpower to perform the kind of intervention Doug’s advocating.

    • #13
    • August 13, 2017 at 3:23 am
    • Like4 likes
  14. Profile photo of Fred Cole Contributor

    When was that Charlottesville statue first erected?

    • #14
    • August 13, 2017 at 7:57 am
    • LikeLike
  15. Profile photo of Bryan G. Stephens Reagan

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):
    Bryan G. Stephens

    Rewriting history is an action of the left. Lee did not throw the nation into a real civil war of the normal type, but went home. He was a great man for that.

    Please explain. I know that he surrendered and Grant never said a bad word about him but I don’t know more beyond that.

    Usually these things dissolve into ongoing guerilla fighting. Surrender and telling his troops to go home was huge.

    Plus, at his church, when a black man came up to pray, Lee joined him. Lee, and no one else in the South, had the stature to say “We lost, it is over”.

    • #15
    • August 13, 2017 at 8:06 am
    • Like6 likes
  16. Profile photo of Hypatia Member
    Hypatia Post author

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):
    Bryan G. Stephens

    Rewriting history is an action of the left. Lee did not throw the nation into a real civil war of the normal type, but went home. He was a great man for that.

    Please explain. I know that he surrendered and Grant never said a bad word about him but I don’t know more beyond that.

    Usually these things dissolve into ongoing guerilla fighting. Surrender and telling his troops to go home was huge.

    Plus, at his church, when a black man came up to pray, Lee joined him. Lee, and no one else in the South, had the stature to say “We lost, it is over”.

    Thank you Bryan!

    I didn’t write this Lee’s “merits to disclose/ Nor draw his frailties from their dread abode” . This is a statue. A piece of metal. And its proposed re-location was made rthe occasion of rioting by outside agitators.

    Leave the bronze horsemen on their plinths, a lightning-rod for reverence and disdain. They can take it. Flesh and blood cannot.

    • #16
    • August 13, 2017 at 8:13 am
    • Like6 likes
  17. Profile photo of The Whether Man Member

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):
    Those who are pushing for the removal of Confederate statues are America’s home-grown version of the Khmer Rouge.

    The Khmer Rouge that killed 1-2 million of their own people? Who arrested, tortured, and slaughtered people across Cambodia? They’re the same as people pushing to remove statutes? These movements appear to be equivalent to you?

    @fredcole: 1924

    • #17
    • August 13, 2017 at 1:51 pm
    • Like2 likes
  18. Profile photo of Mike LaRoche Thatcher

    The Whether Man (View Comment):

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):
    Those who are pushing for the removal of Confederate statues are America’s home-grown version of the Khmer Rouge.

    The Khmer Rouge that killed 1-2 million of their own people? Who arrested, tortured, and slaughtered people across Cambodia? They’re the same as people pushing to remove statutes? These movements appear to be equivalent to you?

    Yes, they do.

    • #18
    • August 13, 2017 at 3:12 pm
    • Like3 likes
  19. Profile photo of Susan Quinn Contributor

    There is something so sick about whitewashing history that is unpleasant, or defaming our heroes. The Left can’t make up its mind about the best way to create a utopian vision. It’s a wonder they can keep track of all their protesting. We did get rid of slavery, and we were blessed with great men. Give it a rest, Lefties.

    • #19
    • August 13, 2017 at 4:33 pm
    • Like5 likes
  20. Profile photo of Boss Mongo Member

    Thanks, H., great post.

    If Charlottesville is going to tear down Robert E. Lee’s statue, should not Charlottesville and U.Va. tear down every mention of Thomas Jefferson?

    Granted, he was the founder of the Declaration of Independence, a revolutionary against the bigger and stronger British, a President of these United States, and one of the original thinkers that put this country on the path to being the greatest country in the world bound by the greatest social contract in history.

    But, slaves.

    So scour Charlottesville of every mention, tribute, sign, and statue of Jefferson. What’s good for the Reb is good for the Revolutionary.

    • #20
    • August 13, 2017 at 7:06 pm
    • Like12 likes
  21. Profile photo of RightAngles Member

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):
    Thanks, H., great post.

    If Charlottesville is going to tear down Robert E. Lee’s statue, should not Charlottesville and U.Va. tear down every mention of Thomas Jefferson?

    Stop giving them ideas

    • #21
    • August 13, 2017 at 7:18 pm
    • Like6 likes
  22. Profile photo of Boss Mongo Member

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):
    Thanks, H., great post.

    If Charlottesville is going to tear down Robert E. Lee’s statue, should not Charlottesville and U.Va. tear down every mention of Thomas Jefferson?

    Stop giving them ideas

    They’d get to it anyway, soon enough.

    • #22
    • August 13, 2017 at 7:25 pm
    • Like3 likes
  23. Profile photo of Cow Girl Thatcher

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):
    Thanks, H., great post.

    If Charlottesville is going to tear down Robert E. Lee’s statue, should not Charlottesville and U.Va. tear down every mention of Thomas Jefferson?

    Granted, he was the founder of the Declaration of Independence, a revolutionary against the bigger and stronger British, a President of these United States, and one of the original thinkers that put this country on the path to being the greatest country in the world bound by the greatest social contract in history.

    But, slaves.

    So scour Charlottesville of every mention, tribute, sign, and statue of Jefferson. What’s good for the Reb is good for the Revolutionary.

    Oh, don’t think that this concept hasn’t been discussed! Here is a link to one story I remember reading. The “Founders” cannot be respected because of slave holding, not to mention being white males…They have a lot of negative aspects to the modern SJW.

    • #23
    • August 13, 2017 at 7:58 pm
    • Like5 likes
  24. Profile photo of Kevin Schulte Member

    Cow Girl (View Comment):

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):
    Thanks, H., great post.

    If Charlottesville is going to tear down Robert E. Lee’s statue, should not Charlottesville and U.Va. tear down every mention of Thomas Jefferson?

    Granted, he was the founder of the Declaration of Independence, a revolutionary against the bigger and stronger British, a President of these United States, and one of the original thinkers that put this country on the path to being the greatest country in the world bound by the greatest social contract in history.

    But, slaves.

    So scour Charlottesville of every mention, tribute, sign, and statue of Jefferson. What’s good for the Reb is good for the Revolutionary.

    Oh, don’t think that this concept hasn’t been discussed! Here is a link to one story I remember reading. The “Founders” cannot be respected because of slave holding, not to mention being white males…They have a lot of negative aspects to the modern SJW.

    If we rounded up all the SJW’s and put them on an island for a year. Would they eat each other ? 🙂

    • #24
    • August 13, 2017 at 8:03 pm
    • Like5 likes
  25. Profile photo of Mike LaRoche Thatcher

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    Cow Girl (View Comment):

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):
    Thanks, H., great post.

    If Charlottesville is going to tear down Robert E. Lee’s statue, should not Charlottesville and U.Va. tear down every mention of Thomas Jefferson?

    Granted, he was the founder of the Declaration of Independence, a revolutionary against the bigger and stronger British, a President of these United States, and one of the original thinkers that put this country on the path to being the greatest country in the world bound by the greatest social contract in history.

    But, slaves.

    So scour Charlottesville of every mention, tribute, sign, and statue of Jefferson. What’s good for the Reb is good for the Revolutionary.

    Oh, don’t think that this concept hasn’t been discussed! Here is a link to one story I remember reading. The “Founders” cannot be respected because of slave holding, not to mention being white males…They have a lot of negative aspects to the modern SJW.

    If we rounded up all the SJW’s and put them on an island for a year. Would they eat each other ? 🙂

    Let’s hope so.

    • #25
    • August 13, 2017 at 8:21 pm
    • Like3 likes
  26. Profile photo of Hypatia Member
    Hypatia Post author

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):
    Thanks, H., great post.

    If Charlottesville is going to tear down Robert E. Lee’s statue, should not Charlottesville and U.Va. tear down every mention of Thomas Jefferson?

    Stop giving them ideas

    Yes, I was gonna say. Sadly, Boss, this is not an extreme position any more. All the founding fathers were complicit in slavery. None of them are worthy of veneration. Expect D.C. to be re-named Tubman . I’m not kidding.

    • #26
    • August 13, 2017 at 8:54 pm
    • Like5 likes
  27. Profile photo of The Whether Man Member

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):

    The Whether Man (View Comment):

    Mike LaRoche (View Comment):
    Those who are pushing for the removal of Confederate statues are America’s home-grown version of the Khmer Rouge.

    The Khmer Rouge that killed 1-2 million of their own people? Who arrested, tortured, and slaughtered people across Cambodia? They’re the same as people pushing to remove statutes? These movements appear to be equivalent to you?

    Yes, they do.

    So you’re cool with whitewashing the history of communist atrocities, then. Is there a false equivalency of the year award? Because you’re giving the “Trump is Hitler” people a real run for their money.

    • #27
    • August 14, 2017 at 3:11 am
    • Like1 like
  28. Profile photo of The Whether Man Member

    Look, no matter what “Mike [redacted] LaRoche” wants to suggest about it, the statue in Charlottesville has gone through a process. People signed a petition for its removal, the democratically-elected city council had a vote on it, they voted to take it down, people who objected sued to prevent it from happening, and it is currently under an injunction pending the outcome of the court case. (You’ll notice that nobody was rounded up for mass extermination in this process.)

    Before the vote and injunction, there was a lot of talk about a compromise in which the statute remained but additional signage was added providing context for the statue, which is one way that other cities have dealt with this issue, though also not without controversy. That will never happen now, because after this weekend the statue will be seen as a rallying point for neo-Nazis and White Nationalists, so I’d put the odds of its near removal at near 100%.

    But the tricky question is this: if it wasn’t a Confederate leader, but someone you found repugnant or offensive in the middle of town – if, for example, a bunch of wacky activists got a statue of Che Guevara erected in the middle of my small, very right-leaning burg – what could we do about it? Should there be a process by which enough of my neighbors and I have the right to petition for it to be removed, relocated, or altered (perhaps to add a body count, so nobody sees the statue and thinks “idealistic dreamer” without also recognizing the human toll of communism)? Should a half dozen Che fans be able to stop it, even if opponents number in the hundreds? How do people who idolize Che and people who are appalled by him live in community with one another in this case?

    • #28
    • August 14, 2017 at 3:36 am
    • Like2 likes
  29. Profile photo of Bryan G. Stephens Reagan

    The Whether Man (View Comment):
    Look, no matter what “Mike [redacted] LaRoche” wants to suggest about it, the statue in Charlottesville has gone through a process. People signed a petition for its removal, the democratically-elected city council had a vote on it, they voted to take it down, people who objected sued to prevent it from happening, and it is currently under an injunction pending the outcome of the court case. (You’ll notice that nobody was rounded up for mass extermination in this process.)

    Before the vote and injunction, there was a lot of talk about a compromise in which the statute remained but additional signage was added providing context for the statue, which is one way that other cities have dealt with this issue, though also not without controversy. That will never happen now, because after this weekend the statue will be seen as a rallying point for neo-Nazis and White Nationalists, so I’d put the odds of its near removal at near 100%.

    But the tricky question is this: if it wasn’t a Confederate leader, but someone you found repugnant or offensive in the middle of town – if, for example, a bunch of wacky activists got a statue of Che Guevara erected in the middle of my small, very right-leaning burg – what could we do about it? Should there be a process by which enough of my neighbors and I have the right to petition for it to be removed, relocated, or altered (perhaps to add a body count, so nobody sees the statue and thinks “idealistic dreamer” without also recognizing the human toll of communism)? Should a half dozen Che fans be able to stop it, even if opponents number in the hundreds? How do people who idolize Che and people who are appalled by him live in community with one another in this case?

    You are making a different argument here. Che is not part of American history, with no real cultural ties to a large swath of the nation. This is not a fair comparison at all. The point being made with comparison to Communists is the rejection of a nation’s history, and the blacklisting of previous heroes based upon today’s understanding.

    “Democracy” does not mean the actions of the crowd are morally right. Indeed, the Founders very much lived in fear of “democracy” as it often has the passion of the crowds of the moment. They wanted cooler heads to prevail. What you have here is the classic 50%+1 able to ram their choices down the throats of the other 50%-1. That is its own form of Tyranny.

    In a broader context, this is one more attack of the PC culture on those who are not getting into line. You cannot remove it from that big picture. This is a national attack on people who don’t think the right way. I think it is dangerous to throw away everyone in the past because they do not meet modern standards. It is double dangerous to do this in order to gain advantage over your current political foes.

    Finally, since Communism comparisons so bother you, let’s set those aside. This is the behavior of the Jacobins in France. They are the true Founders of this sort of thing, and the true fount from which Communism flows.

    • #29
    • August 14, 2017 at 5:00 am
    • Like8 likes
  30. Profile photo of Randy Webster Member

    If you remove from history everyone with whom you disagree, soon you won’t have any history.

    • #30
    • August 14, 2017 at 5:31 am
    • Like5 likes
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