Thank you for being one of our most loyal readers. Please consider supporting community journalism by subscribing.
Re: “Ignorance runs amok in Silent Sam’s toppling” by Jonathan Varnell, Wednesday:
Apparently Mr. Varnell takes the position that the Civil War was fought primarily over the right of self-determination by states. This view has become popular among Civil War apologists, who would like to revise the true history of secession. When South Carolina left the union, it attempted to persuade other states to join it. Of course, South Carolina appealed only to slave-holding states, and its appeal was very specific in that its main concern was the continuation of Negro slavery.
Many of the states that joined them wrote proclamations in which they defended the right to hold slaves as the primary reason for joining the Confederacy. These proclamations are readily available for Mr. Varnell or others to read online if they so choose (shortened link: https://bit.ly/2o2zUz1). North Carolina was quite reluctant to join the Confederacy, being the 10th state to join.
It is worth noting that many of the statues commemorating the Conferderate dead were not erected until many years after the war was over, during a period of time when Southern states attempted to revive a form of slavery by passing “Jim Crow” laws that kept black folks in virtual slavery if they remained in the South.
The fact that many of these statues were erected beside the local courthouse was not a coincidence. I don’t recall ever seeing an old courthouse statue in the South that commemorated the freedom from slavery of the black race.
Mr. Varnell also manages to insert the term Marxist into his letter. I fail to see how he reached the conclusion that Marxism is followed by the UNC administration, an administrative body which is largely controlled by the state legislature.