Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Your flag decal won't get you into heaven anymore

I have said before I am not the world's biggest fan of people who fly the confederate flag.  Whatever I have estimated your intelligence to be, a flag decal on your vehicle will cut it in half.  One of the things that put me off the tea party very early on was the diatribe about how the US wasn't for her people anymore & those people were sporting confederate flags.  Imagine if you will a group of protesters in France complaining that their government was disrespecting them as they flew the Union Jack; absurd, yes?  Then imagine England's succession had not been successful. 

SIDEBAR:  When A was teaching at a small eastern university, many years many you ask?  Well I can say exactly, it was a week before the presidential election that removed Jimmy Carter & put Ronald Reagan in the White House.  More to the point of this story, it was the tail end (although we did not know it) of the Iran hostage crisis & pretty much the only americans in Iran were hostages.  That week, A looked out his window & saw a group of Iranian students protesting & carrying signs.  Their signs said "America, get out of Iran".  Two things struck him.  The first was, of course, how stoopid could they be & the second was that not one single person was interfering with them while they marched around on a busy college campus.  No one was harassing them or cursing or throwing rocks.  He likes to think they were disappointed.

Where were we?  Oh right, the streets of Paris complaining that the French govt was ill-treating British people who didn't want to be there & had tried to get away before & were now trying to take over.  

This whole picture is lost on most confederate flag sporting types.  They don't need you to tell them their history, after all it is THEIR history & they know it well.  Lately I have taken to asking questions about the confederacy of people sporting this flag:  name a single member of the Confederate States of America Cabinet (I used to ask them to name two, thinking Jefferson Davis was a gimme, but turns out he is not).  I do not ask that they stick with the original members, which opens up the field a teeny bit.  One old guy hung in there insisting that Stonewall Jackson had to be one of them (he wasn't), but I said I will give you the point IF you can tell me where the battle that gave him his nickname took place (& you have to do better than "near a stone wall", which while probably correct is not how the nickname came about anyhow); this one battle also has two well known names & I would have taken either of them in lieu of a state/territory name, but he could name none. When I told him one of the names he was QUITE INSISTENT that that could not be correct because that battle was fought against indians (yikes).  Finally, the old guy really didn't like hearing General Jackson actually did not die in battle, he died of pneumonia in the weeks following battle field surgery required because he was (accidentally) shot by Confederate troops.  

Back in the days when I thought up this question I naturally assumed that one person with such a flag decal would be able to answer that one question (they never have), so I thought up a second question:  Name the chairs of the Confederate States of America Cabinet.  I will give you President & Vice-President, there are six more.  One of them, my personal favorite, was largely honorary as the field it was intended to oversee was performed by the Union officer of same as the Confederacy had no....can you guess?    If you can name that one I will give you credit for the whole she-bang.

I have never gotten to the second question (never mind the extra credit option of the second question) because people who do work on our place have stopped wearing confederate flag t-shirts when they come here & they avoid my eye if they happen to run into me in the grocery store while in such garb.  Mostly they are nice people, the ones I know anyhow, who have latched on to that idea the way a drowning man latches onto Jesus; they have filled it with what they need it to be which bears a passing but not detailed resemblance to what it was. 

Today, in 1864, citizens of two confederate states formalized plans to rejoin the Union.  They were Tennessee & Louisiana.  In less than five years, all the confederate states would again have representation in the US Congress.  Say what you will, this does not sound like the behavior of a persecution government. 

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