I was listening to The Memory Palace the other day, the one about celebrated Confederate general Nathan Bedford Forrest, and the statue of him they’ve got in some park.
It occurred to me that this is a statue of a traitor to America. And that anyone still clinging to this idea of the Confederacy, in modern times, is also, in a very literal way, a traitor to America.
How can America be littered with statues of people who wanted to dismantle America? Might as well be statues of British royalty—except they didn't want to buy and sell humans.
As a Canadian, I wouldn’t call myself an American patriot in any sense of the word. I’ve got a complicated but overall fond relationship with the idea of ‘America,’ but my sensibilities aren’t offended by the legions of ‘South will rise again’ folks (insofar as they’re traitors; I’m not a fan of their stance on, nationalism aside, a nation founded on the notion that all men were not created equal).
But how is it that it's always the enormous trucks with the Confederate flags on the back that carry the most quote-unquote patriotic Americans?