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Sunday, October 3, 2010
WND Columnist Defends the Confederacy
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A few years back, Newsmax was serving as the (occasional) defender of the great lost cause of the Confederacy. Has that baton now passed to WorldNetDaily?

A Sept. 30 WND column by Franklin Raff gives it a shot by defending the honor not only of the Confederate battle flag but the Ole Miss antebellum mascot Colonel Reb as legitimate symbols as "sacred and most benign symbols of Southern heritage" that are being abandoned by Southerners who "admit a deeper commitment to ignore and let others define, their past."

Raff feels he needs to gloss over the whole slavery thing:

All Americans understand that scores of Union soldiers fought proudly and honorably "to free the slaves," but now Southerners seem to have started to believe, en masse, that their Confederate ancestors raised their battle flag "to defend the institution of slavery." In fact only a miniscule percentage – I have seen estimates lower than 2 percent – of Confederate soldiers were members of slave-owning families, lived or worked on plantations, or were otherwise part of the "antebellum" life painted by Hollywood. Anyone who knows their history knows exactly what most Confederate officers would have told you in the field: "We have no desire for conquest and, as clearly stated by our political leaders, every wish for national reconciliation. The Confederate battle flag represents the fighting spirit of the citizens of these states who are proudly and patriotically rebelling against a central government which has become tyrannical."

Raff complains further how Southerners are running away from their own heritage:

The long, arduous road toward national reconciliation and equal rights need never have included cultural annihilation: historical, symbolic or otherwise. Yet that is what Southerners face today, and it is their own fault.

By failing to educate their children, or by allowing others to mis-educate their children, and as evidenced by their willingness to repeatedly allow the definition of their cultural symbols – from the Confederate battle flag down to a bow-tied, fancified Southern colonel in a funny suit – as symbols of "hate," they are ultimately, finally, characterizing their forebears – soldiers, yes, along with doctors, lawyers, philosophers, scientists, and farmers, free blacks (including slave-owners), businessmen and politicians (many of whom were abolitionists) – universally, as the simple, hateful hicks federal propagandists once made them out to be.

Raff concludes by claiming the ancestors of modern-day Southerners will confront them and whine much like he is about how they have "willingly disgraced not just this cause – which might have been understandable given the terrible complexity of the time – but you have also disgraced almost every vestige of our memory, corrupting even the flags on our graves."

Raff's end-of-column tagline curiously describes him only as "a Virginian" who "lives in Mount Vernon, Va., and Jerusalem, Israel." In fact, Raff is the producer of convicted felon and domestic terrorist G. Gordon Liddy's radio show (where WND editor Joseph Farah occasionally serves as a guest host) and runs a radio marketing and production operation.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:16 PM EDT

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