Saturday, August 19, 2017
LEARNING the Lessons of Racism (or Repeating Them)
I have been wanting to do a blog on this for a while, and the recent events are the perfect opportunity to do the blog post. It is about time that we talked about the "southern heritage" of slavery.
When I first began college, I was picking what frat I would join. After looking at several of them, I chose Kappa Alpha, because they stood when women entered the room and expressed themselves as being southern "gentlemen" and honoring God and women. Sounded like a good organization, at least in it's ideals. Indeed, they also presented themselves as being in the tradition of Knights Templar and had books of standing for the weak and oppressed.
Of course, I learned, all of that was B.S. It was a FRATURNITY...it existed for one reason. It gave the boys in it the chance to DRINK in a house on a "christian" school and have women overnight in their rooms. Those "gentlemen" traditions were well crafted babe magnets, who weren't naive girls that thought they were really innocent men. Most of them were horny girls looking to get laid and those sweet things being said were a good excuse. I realized this soon enough to not get fully involved with them...however, it did give me an insider view of the frat house, including their worship of Robert E Lee as their "spiritual founder."
Hmm....so a man that fought a war to defend the states' rights to allow people to OWN people was the "spiritual" founder of this organization that "honored" God and stood for the "weak"...I guess ignoring the weak that were say...BLACK and being abused by that culture.
I understand this misunderstanding in our society. Many movies have been made that romanticized the south in the Civil War and made you think of those Southern Leaders as being champions of virtue, even as almost NONE of those movies showed those generals or soldiers with the people that they OWNED.
Yes, it is true that not only the south had slaves...the north did, also, at times. However, the CONFEDERATE FLAG WAS THE SYMBOL OF THOSE THAT FOUGHT TO OWN THEM. It is one thing to go along with an unpopular thing that is wrong, but it is another thing completely to fight to keep doing wrong. So, when people, today, wave that flag around, it is not just a current state flag. It is a symbol. It was waved by an army with a purpose. You can't take a Nazi flag and say you are waving it around because you like windmills. No one would buy that. Indeed, even today, it is used in EVERY march of white racists and fascists in the country, as well as southern hicks with gun racks in trucks by rednecks that spout the "evil" of affirmative action and praise cops shooting black teens on the street.
So,maybe, we can look at all that is happening and those that are promoting group hatred (whether that group be black or Muslim or Liberal) and maybe we can learn the lessons of the past, rather than chart a course to repeating them in our day.