Confederates Are Not Nazis
Greetings Cosmic Americans!
Did you ever think that you would see the day when I would defend Confederates? Well…this is not so much a defense as a clarification. Nothing drives me more crazy than when people flippantly compare Confederates to Nazis. Seriously – it happens all the time…and by people respected in their fields. I suppose understand when people want to make the worst possible connection to a nation founded to preserve slavery – it’s just bad history.
For example – Julian Bond, chairman of the NAACP and a man for whom I hold a great deal of respect and admiration…not to mention, have shared a few meals with – (he is an excellent and most fascinating dinner companion) has missed the mark in the Confederate/Nazi regard. Having publicly referred to the Confederate flag as a “Swastika” he explicitly connected the governments. The two are not even close.
Many others have made similar comparisons…suggesting that the Confederacy was akin to Nazi Germany due solely to the southern nation’s racial policies. Authors such as Peter Kalajian, to site just one example, claim that both societies stood for hate, oppression, wanton murder, and destruction.
Not so fast. Now no one would ever accuse me of standing up for the Rebels, but let’s get a couple of things clear. One – the southern states seceded to protect slavery. Two – this, as I see it, was treason. Period. But they were not Nazis. They did not resemble Nazis in any way, shape, or form.
The Confederate States of America was a democratic republic, with a Constitution and a representative government run by elected officials held accountable for their actions. It was a slave holding republic to be sure – just like the United States of America from 1776 to 1865. Just like it. The significant difference – the CSA was a little more clear on the whole “permanence of slavery” thing.
Yes I know…whenever a bunch of white supremacist a-holes get together they trot out all kinds of symbols – including the Swastika and the Confederate flag. But what do these guys know? I am not sure that any of them could give you much information on either of the governments they are supposedly representing.
So next time you hear some one make the tenuous comparison between a 19th century democracy and a 20th century Fascist dictatorship – just roll your eyes. Or better yet – ask them to clarify. Exactly how are the two related???