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VMI Deletes Famous Confederate General from Cadet Life

FJAG

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daftandbarmy said:
Of course there was a huge difference between Nazism and Slavery.

The former only lasted a few years.

The latter, in the North American/ European/ African context, lasted for centuries and was at the heart of a very successful (for the Colonial Masters) mercantilist system...

"Trade, during this period, became triangulated between the British Empire, its colonies, and foreign markets. This fostered the development of the slave trade in many colonies, including America. The colonies provided rum, cotton, and other products heavily demanded by imperialists in Africa. In turn, slaves were returned to America or the West Indies and traded for sugar and molasses."

https://www.investopedia.com/ask/answers/041615/how-did-mercantilism-affect-colonies-great-britain.asp#:~:text=Key%20Takeaways,an%20imbalanced%20system%20of%20trade.

Good point.

:cheers:
 

YZT580

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while you are indulging in a little flagellation don't forget the company towns and mines in the north and in England, Wales etc. not to mention the serfdom maintained on many British estates right through to WW1.  Abuse of those less fortunate is not confined to race.  Slavery is  still prevalent in many countries particularly those in the middle east.  Indeed you will find it in downtown Toronto or Ottawa (called brothels) ask any morality cop.  We shouldn't be too quick to condemn the south without taking a hard look elsewhere including the union states.  Back to Jackson though.  When the south split he had two choices: leave his home and return at the head of an army to destroy it or join with his neighbours.  The American constitution provided for each state to have its own army.  Still does.  Jackson held a commission in that army and had pledged his loyalty to it.  He found nothing morally wrong with the orders that he was given from his legitimate superior officers so he obeyed.  That is not being a traitor and you malign him when you imply that he is.  Much as England has split from the EU so too the southern states split from the union: they believed they had the right to do that and from what I have read there was no rule against it.  The possibility was never covered by the founding fathers.  The war broke out over Fort Sumter which was a union held defensive position in the centre of Charleston harbour which was of course a southern town.  Theoretically if the union had abandoned the federal holdings in the south there would never have been a war and there would now be two
States of America.  I mentioned England because, again theoretically by leaving the union they too could be considered as traitors  and there is a very real possibility that there could be some military brinkmanship over things like fishing rights.  That is all I will say.   
 

DeweyDecimal

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YZT580 said:
while you are indulging in a little flagellation don't forget the company towns and mines in the north and in England, Wales etc. not to mention the serfdom maintained on many British estates right through to WW1.  Abuse of those less fortunate is not confined to race.  Slavery is  still prevalent in many countries particularly those in the middle east.  Indeed you will find it in downtown Toronto or Ottawa (called brothels) ask any morality cop.  We shouldn't be too quick to condemn the south without taking a hard look elsewhere including the union states. 

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

We now return to our regularly scheduled programming.
 

FJAG

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I think things were a bit more complex than that.

While each state had a militia, as a result of the War of 1812, the Federal Government also formed a small Federal Army that was quite separate from the state militias. Both Jackson and Lee held commissions in that Federal, or US, Army rather than the state militias and made very bright names for themselves in the Mexican War.

In Lee's case, he was a commissioned engineer officer in the US Army until after the Confederate States started seceding and was even brought to Washington and offered command of the Union Army which he declined, resigned and went to Virginia. He specifically thought secession was unconstitutional but felt as a matter of conscience not to fight against his fellow countrymen Virginians. He eventually accepted command of the Provisional Army of Virginia and shortly after accepted a Confederate Army position.

Jackson's position was less problematic. He too had a commission as a federal US Army artillery officer but went on furlough in 1851 to teach at Virginia Military Institute. He subsequently resigned from the US Army in 1852 well before the Civil war started. At the time of Virginia's secession he was asked by the Governor to start training recruits and eventually given command of Harper's Ferry where he assembled what would later be called the "Stonewall Brigade".

Terms of service for officers were a bit weaker in those days and resigning one's commission was easily done. I don't think that Jackson was actually a member of the Virginia Militia after resigning from the US Army albeit that VMI was a state military institution and on at least two occasions Jackson led the Corps of Cadets on "militaryish duties" at the command of the Governor. In fact though he didn't approach the Governor for a commission in the Virginia Militia until very shortly after Virginia seceded and was initially offered one at his past brevet US Army rank of major. After going back and telling the Governor just what he thought of that he was commissioned as a colonel in the Provisional Army of Virginia which Lee commanded.

So the question is: were they traitors? Both had sworn oaths to defend the United States when they became officers. Jackson resigned well before the war and as such I have a hard time saying that he ever broke his oath. Lee on the other hand was still serving when the cascade of secession started and resigned when his country needed him the most in order to "defend his country" Virginia. I tend to take a dimmer view of Lee than I take of Jackson.

Personally I don't look at the whole statue issue as one of traitors or patriots. IMHO the issue is that the statues were erected as a symbol of white supremacy at a time when the South was actively suppressing blacks who had long before been given their freedom. These days, 50 plus years after the civil rights movement, these statues of people who fought hard to defend slavery are staring down on black cadets who still struggle to be viewed as equals by their fellow cadets. The time to stop that has come.

:cheers:
 

YZT580

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I agree with your premise FJAG but where does it stop?  They are re-naming Lincoln H.S. in LA because according to the complainants, he wasn't committed enough to emancipation!  The neighbourhood indigenous tribes have no problem with the name Cleveland Indians but because some influential group made a big noise it will change.  I guess the Black Hawk jersey is next.  I would vote for it if all these protests really meant something but they don't.  Most of them are invented by spoiled little rich kids many of whom are white incidentally.  VMI has had its first African American cadet commander: that is change.  Like him or not (and I didn't and still don't) the U.S. has had its first African American president: that is change.  But real change will finally have arrived only when there are no hyphenated citizens or positions because people won't even think about race or religion.  And then they will be able to put statues of people like Jackson back on their pedestals to remember the good that they actually did.  Incidentally, according to VMI's charter, all instructors had commissions at that time.
 

Blackadder1916

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FJAG said:
So the question is: were they traitors? Both had sworn oaths to defend the United States when they became officers. Jackson resigned well before the war and as such I have a hard time saying that he ever broke his oath. Lee on the other hand was still serving when the cascade of secession started and resigned when his country needed him the most in order to "defend his country" Virginia. I tend to take a dimmer view of Lee than I take of Jackson.

From LII
U.S. Constitution Annotated
This edition of the Congressional Research Service's U.S. Constitution Annotated is a hypertext interpretation of the CRS text, updated to the currently published version. It links to Supreme Court opinions, the U.S. Code, and the Code of Federal Regulations, as well as enhancing navigation through search, breadcrumbs, linked footnotes and tables of contents.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution-conan/article-3/section-3/clause-1/treason#fn1483art3
. . .  Although the United States Government regarded the activities of the Confederate States as a levying of war, the President by Amnesty Proclamation of December 25, 1868, pardoned all those who had participated on the southern side in the Civil War. In applying the Captured and Abandoned Property Act of 1863 (12 Stat. 820) in a civil proceeding, the Court declared that the foundation of the Confederacy was treason against the United States. . . .

They levied war against the United States (one of the two actions that constitute treason according to the US Constitution), thus they "were" traitors or would have been so found if any had been tried and found guilty by a court.  They were also pardoned of that crime (though would it have applied to Jackson since he pre-deceased the pardon).  Is a traitor still a traitor after he has been pardoned?
 

FJAG

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YZT580 said:
I agree with your premise FJAG but where does it stop?  ...

I have no idea where it will stop.

Cancel culture is almost like anarchism or nihilism in many ways. It rejects whatever offends some people at the moment. There used to be a time where the common sense of the common man kept the brakes on things but the more and more that our youths are becoming the victims of social media, the easier it is for stupid thoughts to spread like a plague and be accepted widely.

The problem really is that it isn't unique to one end of society. We like to think that the concept is enshrined in the liberal halls of universities, but there are just as many stupid concepts that send off the sensibilities of the conservatives. Quite frankly, I think both ends of the scale have gone off the deep end a lot further than I ever thought they would. The last few years have proven to me that my previous beliefs as to what stupid bandwagons ordinary people were prepared to jump on was a gross underestimation.

We've become a society of the easily offended. Who ever thought John A MacDonald's statue would be torn down by anyone other than an AA chapter? Or that one for Louis Riel would be put up? The Legion of Frontiersmen is probably itching to try their roping skills on that.  ;D

I try to see both sides of an issue. Probably part of my legal training to critically analyze the weaknesses of my own arguments. That's not to say that after having done so I don't reject one as plain silly. Or that sometimes I argue I position that other folks don't want anything to do with. But at least I try to see both sides. Unfortunately that's becoming a lost trait these days.

:cheers:
 

Kilted

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mariomike said:
These threads about the Confederate flag, and statues of Confederate generals, remind me a little bit of something I once read,

After World War 2, all symbols of Nazism  were ordered removed in Germany.

German war cemeteries were / are places of honour, and respected as such.

For whatever reason(s), a similar idea did not seem to meet with as much enthusiasm after the American Civil War.

It hadn't been associated with racism at the time, if groups like KKK had never used items such as the Confederate flag, it likely wouldn't have been nearly as contraversial. Even today you could probably get away with displaying other flags of the confederacy that don't share the same association (it is true that they likely wouldn't be recognized) such as the first national flag or the "bonnie blue flag", which is actually identical to the flag of Solmolia.
 

FJAG

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Blackadder1916 said:
From LII
https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution-conan/article-3/section-3/clause-1/treason#fn1483art3
They levied war against the United States (one of the two actions that constitute treason according to the US Constitution), thus they "were" traitors or would have been so found if any had been tried and found guilty by a court.  They were also pardoned of that crime (though would it have applied to Jackson since he pre-deceased the pardon).  Is a traitor still a traitor after he has been pardoned?

You'll note that while I asked the question, I sidestepped the issue gracefully by going no further than to say that IMHO Lee broke his oath as an officer by not defending the US against all enemies foreign and domestic (I'm guessing the oath was something like that even back then).  :whistle:

I don't think that there is any restriction against posthumous pardons. I've heard of several in differing countries.

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FJAG

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Kilted said:
It hadn't been associated with racism at the time, if groups like KKK had never used items such as the Confederate flag, it likely wouldn't have been nearly as contraversial. Even today you could probably get away with displaying other flags of the confederacy that don't share the same association (it is true that they likely wouldn't be recognized) such as the first national flag or the "bonnie blue flag", which is actually identical to the flag of Solmolia.

The first flag of the Confederacy "The Stars and Bars"

383px-Flag_of_the_Confederate_States_of_America_%28March_1861_%E2%80%93_May_1861%29.svg.png


was too confusing with the US "Stars and Stripes" on the battlefield and so a 2nd national flag was commissioned and adopted called the "Stainless Banner"

315px-Flag_of_the_Confederate_States_of_America_%281863%E2%80%931865%29.svg.png


The canton of this flag became the Confederate battle flag.

When the stainless banner was first introduced, one newspaper wrote thusly about it:

The flag is also known as the Stainless Banner, and the matter of the person behind its design remains a point of contention. On April 23, 1863, the Savannah Morning News editor William Tappan Thompson, with assistance from William Ross Postell, a Confederate blockade runner, published an editorial championing a design featuring the battle flag on a white background he referred to later as "The White Man's Flag."[6] In explaining the white background, Thompson wrote, "As a people we are fighting to maintain the Heaven-ordained supremacy of the white man over the inferior or colored race; a white flag would thus be emblematical of our cause."

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Cloud Cover

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Well the British used to write stupid stuff like that too, putting God on Britain’s side, reverenting  the Crown law over savage anarchy, deploring other customs and races as false or inferior. That Union Jack has stood against as much evil as any other, and we’ve done well by it for the most part.
But that Confederate flag irritates me more, it’s like a defiant statement that they are still lurking around, and maybe they are...
 

mariomike

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From Reply #29,

As a people we are fighting to maintain the Heaven-ordained supremacy of the white man over the inferior or colored race; a white flag would thus be emblematical of our cause

These threads about the Confederacy remind me of the song "Dixie" - Union version,  :)

Away down South in the land of traitors,
Rattlesnakes and alligators,
Right away, come away, right away, come away.
Where cotton's king and men are chattels,
Union boys will win the battles,
Right away, come away, right away, come away.

Then we'll all go down to Dixie,
Away, away,
Each Dixie boy must understand
That he must mind his Uncle Sam.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvjOG5gboFU


 

Kilted

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FJAG said:
When the stainless banner was first introduced, one newspaper wrote thusly about it:

That's what one newspaper had as an idea prior to the introduction of the flag.  It's referred to as the stainless banner in reference to the third national flag, which included a red bar, due to the fact that the flag could too easily be mistaken for a flag of surrender. 
 

mariomike

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FJAG said:
Not evil? Read a book about Andersonville some day to see how the Confederacy treated white prisoners of war. Or the Confederates' massacre of black POWs at Fort Pillow.

:cheers:

In case anyone is interested, of the approximately 45,000 Union prisoners held at Andersonville during the Civil War, nearly 13,000 died.

By comparison, 93,941 American POWs were held as "guests of the Third Reich". 92,820 survived. 
 

YZT580

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mariomike said:
In case anyone is interested, of the approximately 45,000 Union prisoners held at Andersonville during the Civil War, nearly 13,000 died.

By comparison, 93,941 American POWs were held as "guests of the Third Reich". 92,820 survived.
30,192 union soldiers died as POWs.  31,000 confederate troops died as POWs.  So life in a union camp was just as bad as that in the south.  All that does is confirm the adage that it is the victors who write the history.  Things like casualty lists are used to validate the notion that the winner was good and the loser was bad
 

mariomike

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YZT580 said:
30,192 union soldiers died as POWs.  31,000 confederate troops died as POWs.  So life in a union camp was just as bad as that in the south.  All that does is confirm the adage that it is the victors who write the history.  Things like casualty lists are used to validate the notion that the winner was good and the loser was bad

FJAG was referring specifically to Andersonville.

FJAG said:
Not evil? Read a book about Andersonville some day to see how the Confederacy treated white prisoners of war. 

The problem seems to be related to racism,

The exchange system broke down in mid 1863 when the Confederacy refused to treat captured black prisoners as equal to white prisoners.

Ref: The Collapse of the Confederacy page 88.


 

Blackadder1916

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mariomike said:
In case anyone is interested, of the approximately 45,000 Union prisoners held at Andersonville during the Civil War, nearly 13,000 died.

By comparison, 93,941 American POWs were held as "guests of the Third Reich". 92,820 survived.

Using the comparison of POW survival rates as a measure of "evil" may not be the best argument.  While the death rate for Confederate soldiers held as POWs by the North was lower, it was not that much lower (12% vs 15.5%).  The conditions in POW camps on both sides were horrific and it could be said that Union policy was more brutal due to deliberate cutting of rations to Confederate prisoners as retaliation when reports of Andersonville conditions reached Northern military authorities.
 

mariomike

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Blackadder1916 said:
Using the comparison of POW survival rates as a measure of "evil" may not be the best argument. 

I didn't use that word.

FJAG said:
Not evil? Read a book about Andersonville some day to see how the Confederacy treated white prisoners of war.

But, I did find this of interest, as to why the prisoner exchange program broke down,

The exchange system broke down in mid 1863 when the Confederacy refused to treat captured black prisoners as equal to white prisoners.


 

Eaglelord17

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FJAG said:
Let me take a guess: There are no black slave ancestors in your family.

Yes there's a difference between the confederacy and the Nazis, but it wasn't huge. The Nazis took what was a general attitude to non Europeans (particularly Jews and Slavic communists) by Europeans (and North Americans) and turned it into an extreme "final solution". Confederates enslaved an entire racial class, ripped their families apart and condemned them to perpetual labour in the fields.

To say the Confederates weren't evil and merely wanted to control their own destiny is falling right into the white supremacist mythology of the "Lost Cause of the Confederacy" which grew after the Civil War until it reached a crescendo around the First World War.

The political system didn't fail them. What was happening before the Civil War was a wide movement to remove slavery from the western democratic society which had swept Europe and had made massive inroads into North America until it hit hard against the South whose wealthy class was basically formed by slave-owning agricultural class which wasn't prepared to give up their lifestyle and source of income; basically cotton dollars required the continued enslavement. Remember that these are the same folks who insisted that negros count as 3/5th of a man in the Constitution, not because they thought he was a fraction of a human being (in fact they thought of negros as sub human) but because they wanted the additional numbers to bolster their political weight in the central government vis a vis the growing Northern population. That wealthy class was completely supported by the South's lower classes who were more than happy to treat slaves as their inferiors and to rally around the jingoistic "States Rights" rhetoric of the day.

Not evil? Read a book about Andersonville some day to see how the Confederacy treated white prisoners of war. Or the Confederates' massacre of black POWs at Fort Pillow.

I know that you are trying to slot this argument into a bigger point but unfortunately your point is lost on what can easily be perceived as the minimization and excusing of an attempt by the South to maintain the indefinite oppression of a race of people which even at the relevant time was considered totally unacceptable by the right-thinking, God-fearing western society of the day.

:cheers:

The Confederates didn't enslave pretty much anyone, they were already enslaved by the Americans and the Africans (as per how the slave trade worked prior to its abolishment). There is a huge difference between setting up a system and inheriting a system. Much like how currently we have inherited a system of oppression, genocide, and slavery. Many within our society would fight to maintain (and we do though military actions, political actions, and economic actions) the current system and the status quo that comes with it.

My point isn't that slavery isn't evil, I personally am a equal rights advocate, and that includes for all people on this planet not just us, rather that the attempts made by the modern era to try and simplify the US Civil War as good and evil are in my opinion flawed. Pretty much everyone in the USA at that period of time was a racist POS, and the essential creation of a apartheid state post Civil War which only ended in 1965 is a great example of how the USA still won't come to terms with its extremely racist imperialist past.

We can even show how this continues to this very day by the poor treatment of others for economic gain by the way they treat illegal immigrants. The only reason they come to America is because they know they can get work. The reason they can get work is because many Americans don't want to pay fair wages to the people doing the work. What better way than having someone who shouldn't even be in the country work for you for cash so you don't have to provide benefits, pay taxes, fair wages, and can make massive profits off their labour? If they get injured you have no obligations to them and they have to fend for themselves. Very close to slavery in my opinion because if they stand up to you, you call to have them deported.

Wanting to control your own destiny is a huge part of it. The reasons you may want to control your destiny maybe wrong but you cannot say they didn't want to make decisions for themselves. Is what the South did by succeeding illegal? That can be answered by is what America did by succeeding from the UK illegal?

Also the South and North both treated prisoners horribly. Other than the ones killed in the camps you also had the many thousands broken by things like the 'wooden horse' they would have them sit on for hours on end and would physically and psychologically break them. 10% of the people who died in the Civil War were in POW camps so neither side were good there.

Remius said:
Eaglelord, 
You are following the same line that southern apologists have used for decades.  That is wasn’t about slavery.  It was. 
The debate about whether it was a war for states rights or slavery still lingers but all you have to do is look at the various articles and declarations of secession from most states shows clearly that slavery was front and center, and that they feared abolition.
This link below shows the percentage of content related to slavery or states rights.  Note though that some  things about states rights involves slavery.
https://www.battlefields.org/learn/articles/reasons-secession
There is a link in the article that will send you to the original documents and articles of secession.
You be the judge.  But slavery seems to be THE main reason.
Now you comparing economic inequality with slavery is apples and oranges.  Everyone in Canada enjoys the same basic rights.  What we don’t necessarily all enjoy is equal social or economic equality and or outcomes.  Many things can explain that but it is not slavery where one group subjugates another group and essentially treats that group as less than human or as property. And more importantly that subjugation is state sponsored and encouraged by law. 
Trying to compare both in the same light only serves to dilute the travesty that slavery was in the US at that time even by that standard.
The south was a slave society.  Based on race and race alone.  There is a big difference between a society with slaves (which at one point Canada was) and a Slave society (which the confederacy was and past its best before date).  Society with slaves didn’t rely on slaves for its prosperity whereas a slave society does. Hence the civil war.  That way of life was threatened and the violently opposed changes to that.  Whether it was fighting the North or hanging, lynching and raping any slave that sought to try and leave or fight back.

Not everyone in Canada enjoys the same basic rights, some are more equal than others in this country. I am not a advocate for equal outcomes, I am a advocate for equal opportunity. Part of that is the fact we buy products that cannot legally be produced the same way in our country, from people who we pay next to nothing (or nothing as some of these countries are employing slave labour such as China), so we can enjoy a higher quality of living than those people. Fair trade and treatment means our quality of life will go down as the rest of the worlds goes up and we are doing our best to prevent that as a society.

I never said Slavery wasn't a reason for the Souths succession, rather it isn't the only reason. There were also Northern slave owning states as well so the clear line of pro-slavery/anti-slavery that people try to make isn't as clear as people would like it to be. I stand by my statement that pretty much everyone from that time period in the USA were terrible people be they fighting for the North or South.
 
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