“The South shall rise again!” Who knew these words would be so prophetic? Indeed, not only has the South risen, but it has also brought the Confederacy with it. However, this time it isn’t the Democratic Party that is bringing up the Confederacy, it is in fact, the Republican Party.
Confederate sympathizers have been around since the end of the Civil War in 1865 but it has only been since President Obama took office in January 2009 that the Confederacy movement reared its ugly head. Driven by racism and hatred of government and liberals, the Republican Party has revealed itself to be the political force behind this resurgence, and they aren’t even trying to deny it.
In the last two years, Republicans have been touting states rights in their effort to take down President Obama and destroy the federal government. There have been threats to secede, proposals in states to print their own separate legal tender, rewrites of American history to glorify the Confederacy movement, and increasing racism.
There are many actions happening today that mirror events in the past that led to the formation of the Confederacy, one of which, is the threat of secession. Many states and individuals have either stated that secession is on the table or have come right out and threatened it outright. In April 2009, Texas Gov. Rick Perry fired up an anti-tax tea party audience with his stance against the federal government and for states’ rights as some in his U.S. flag-waving audience shouted, “Secede!” Perry stated that “There’s a lot of different scenarios…But if Washington continues to thumb their nose at the American people, you know, who knows what might come out of that.” Perry clearly fanned the flames of rebellion with his statements but it’s not just that one crowd or Perry himself, it’s at least half of Republicans in Texas. One poll reveals that half of Texas Republicans favor seceding. And Texas isn’t the only state that has made this threat.
In April 2009, the State Senate in Georgia also threatened to secede not long after Texas made its threat. Later in July, Zach Wamp, the US Representative of Tennessee stated during his run for Governor, “I hope that the American people will go to the ballot box in 2010 and 2012 so that states are not forced to consider separation from this government.” Wamp also promised to refuse to implement the federal health care law at the state level if elected Governor of Tennessee. Then, just this past February, Arizona’s Republican Senate voted to secede. The secession bill also asserts that Arizona can nullify and refuse to abide by any federal laws with which it does not want to comply. Russell Pearce, the lawmaker who introduced the bill stated that, “It’s not the law of the land when a Supreme Court issues a bad decision. It’s to be challenged and overturned.” Basically, Pearce is saying that whatever the Supreme Court passes isn’t the law of the land if he deems it a bad decision. Many other states are also considering secession, including Mississippi, Oklahoma, Alabama and a few others. And it’s no surprise that most of these states are located in the South.
This isn’t the first time that Southern states have threatened to secede. In the 1850’s, the threat of secession occurred throughout the South. The argument of course concerned slavery. Southern states threw temper tantrums from time to time so that they could get their way. In 1860, the South objected to the anti-slavery Republican Party winning the Presidency and took their threats to the next level. One by one they seceded because Abraham Lincoln had been legally elected as the 16th US President. The South believed wrongfully that they had the right to own slaves when in fact, no such right exists in the Constitution. In this time period, the Republicans were the liberals fighting for the Union and the freedom of slaves. Democrats were the conservatives of the era fighting for slavery and states rights. Contrary to what Republicans believe today, the Constitution does not permit a state to secede once it is a part of the Union. Nowhere in the Constitution does it give a state the right to secede, nor does it give states the power to ignore laws they don’t like. It took a Civil War to settle that and the Supreme Court has even weighed in. In Texas v White in 1869, the court stated that the entry of Texas into the United States was its entry into “an indissoluble relation.” It said that only through revolution or mutual consent of the state and the United States could a state leave the Union.
But threats of secession are not the only actions that Republicans in the South have undertaken. There are many other signs that Republicans have completely embraced the Confederacy. Take money for example. One of the first things that southern states did to prepare for secession was to print their own separate currencies. Many Republicans in multiple red states are pushing to do the same thing in the present day. As of today, Georgia, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Utah have all introduced bills or have passed bills that allow their states to print their own money, or decide what constitutes legal tender. In North Carolina, state Rep. Glen Bradley wants his state to issue its own legal tender backed by silver and gold. He is also drafting a second bill that would require state government to accept gold and silver coins as payment for taxes and fees. Bobby Franklin, a Republican state legislator from Georgia, has introduced a new piece of legislation that, if passed, would force Georgians to pay their taxes in pre-1965 gold and silver coins. In Utah, the Senate approved a bill that would require the state to recognize gold and silver coins as legal tender. Another proposal in Utah would allow residents to operate their own mints.
And a proposal in Virginia would allow the state to print its own money. These actions are all unconstitutional as well. The Constitution specifically states that only the federal government has the power to coin money and only the federal government has the power to decide what constitutes legal tender. It forbids states from printing their own money. The Constitution is clear on this subject. Republicans are knowingly violating the law of the land. But there’s more.
Republicans all over the South are making it a priority to honor and glorify the Confederacy and everything it stood for, including treason, racism, and slavery. Once again we take a look at Texas, where officials there are rushing 888 million dollars worth of new changes to textbooks that rewrite American history to turn the slave trade into the Atlantic triangle trade, and to present more Confederate figures in the Civil War as heroes. Texas is also crafting the Civil Rights Movement as being little more than a footnote in history. Republicans are trying to brainwash American children. They want kids to look up to the traitorous leaders of the Confederacy and become nothing more than a foot soldier willing to wage war against the United States. They want children to see other races as inferior to whites and they want to make kids believe that slavery is right. They also want people to believe that states rights can overrule federal law.
Republicans are glorifying the Confederacy in other ways too. Virginia’s Republican Governor Bob McDonnell declared April to be “Confederate History Month,” the first time in 8 years that such a proclamation had been issued in the state. And McDonnell conveniently omitted slavery as a part of that history. The Confederacy is not something that should be honored. If anything Virginia should apologize for being a traitorous state that treated African Americans like animals and stabbing the Constitution in the back in its effort to continue doing so. The rest of the South should apologize as well. Repeatedly. To honor such a dubious bunch of traitors is treason itself and Republicans should be ashamed to call themselves patriotic Americans. They have no right to proclaim their love for America while plotting against it at the same time.
Then there’s Mississippi, where The Mississippi Division of Sons of Confederate Veterans is proposing a license plate that honors Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest, who was also an early leader of the Ku Klux Klan. To even propose such a thing should be a crime and what’s worse is that Governor Haley Barbour refuses to denounce it. Governor Barbour has been known to defend white supremacy groups and the Confederate history of the South. Just another Southerner that refuses to let go of the past. Part of that refusal to let go of the past are the current calls to repeal parts or all of the Civil Rights Act which protects people, particularly those who are not white, from being discriminated against based on their skin color, national origin, and race. Many Republicans freely admit their disdain for the Civil Rights Act, including Rand Paul who publicly stated his belief of repealing Civil Rights in an interview with Rachel Maddow of MSNBC. Republicans want Civil Rights repealed because they want to return to segregation. They say that businesses should have the right to do business with whoever they want but that’s not the entire story. Republicans know that if businesses have the right to discriminate, so will hospitals, private schools, and so on. This is why Republicans are calling for an end to the public school system in favor of private schools. Republicans want to separate white kids from black kids and want to make it harder for black people to get medical care.
But it gets more sinister than that. Republicans intend to bring back Jim Crow as a way to keep African Americans from voting. This already occurs in Virginia and Kentucky where even if you have a minor criminal record, you are forbidden to vote. You can apply for clemency from the governor but unless it’s granted, you have no right to vote even though you’ve served your time. This criminal disenfranchisement all goes back to Jim Crow and the reason for it is very clear. During the Virginia Constitutional Convention of 1901, delegate Carter Glass described the criminal disenfranchisement provision as part of a plan to “eliminate the darkey as a political factor in this state in less than 5 years, so that in no single county…will there be the least concern felt for the complete supremacy of the white race in the affairs of government.” More than 300,000 people have lost the right to vote for life in Virginia. One in five African-Americans, and one in four African-American men, have no voting rights in Virginia due to this provision. African Americans make up one fifth of Virginia’s population, but over half of those denied the right to vote are African-American. And Virginia plans to make it even harder to get voting rights back. They are adding a written essay to the application to make former convicts explain why they should get back their civil rights. To me, this is just a way to keep people from voting. Any trumped up charges against an African American and a racist judge corrupt enough to lock them up is all it would take to remove another potential Democratic voter off the rolls. I agree that if you are IN prison, you shouldn’t have the right to vote, but once you’ve served your time, you should have ALL of your rights as a free citizen. But Republicans want to game the system and make elections easier to win for themselves.
Call it whatever you want to call it, to me, Republicans are committing treason by even thinking about doing these things. Republicans were the ones who originally brought down the Confederacy in the first place and now the Party of Lincoln has been hijacked by a bunch of Confederate sympathizers who long for the good old days of treason, states rights, and slavery. Today’s Republican Party is proud of the Confederate flag and what it stands for. South Carolina still flies the Confederate flag outside of the state house. No government entity, whether it be local, state, or federal, should be allowed to fly that flag. Period. Its the flag of traitors and racists and has no place in American society where everyone is considered equal. If Republicans are so proud of the Confederacy, they must also be proud of slavery. Proud of those who beat and lynched African Africans. Proud of those who are responsible for the deaths of 600,000 Americans. Proud of the people who assassinated President Lincoln. Proud of those who segregated the South. Proud of those who almost destroyed this nation that Republicans claim to love. They must also be proud of the Ku Klux Klan and the crosses they burn. The South hasn’t learned anything from their utter defeat during the Civil War. They have thirsted for revenge for almost 150 years now, and have passed on their hatred of government, liberals, and people of color to their children and grandchildren in the hope that one day, the South can rise back up and re-institute the Confederacy and everything it was all about. Republicans are nothing more than neo-Confederates that have shown their true colors because a black man became President of the United States. It’s time to punish Republicans for their treasonous ways. The federal government can cut the budget and pay down the debt by completely cutting off the South. No more welfare, no more government grants, no more money for education, no more Medicare or Social Security, no more transportation, infrastructure, energy, and health care funding. And no more grants or funding to southern based corporations. If you live in the South, you will have no one to blame but the Republicans that run your part of the country. They’re the ones calling for cuts of this funding. I say cut the funding from the South and put it to good use where people want the funding. I’d love to watch Republicans explain to their southern constituents why they have nothing. We do not need a war to punish Republican turncoats. All we need to do is punish them economically. Anybody who glorifies treason and racism do not deserve to have the freedom and rights that the United States has. Republicans are playing a dangerous game with all these threats of secession and refusals to follow federal law. The Confederacy is no more and should remain dead. All Confederate flags need to be burned and any glorification of the Confederacy needs to permanently end. But if Republicans choose to continue their treasonous actions, they had better watch their necks, because last time I checked, the punishment for treason is still execution. It may be time to start building scaffolds.