What If the South Had Won the Civil War?
By William S. Lind
January 9, 2003
Historians often indulge in scholarly speculation as to what the course of history would have been had major wars, battles, elections or the like gone the other way. In such an exercise, William S. Lind, Director of the Free Congress Foundation's Center for Cultural Conservatism, wrote a commentary in 1999 hypothesizing a course of history had the South won and the Union lost our American Civil War.
Three years later a controversy has erupted. Reports in The Sacramento Bee and The Washington Post were published in the past few days centering upon that 1999 commentary. Bill Back, a candidate in the current contest for state GOP chairman in California had published the commentary in an e-letter at the time that it was originally published in 1999. In the wake of the Trent Lott controversy, Back fell under fire for having done so, eventually feeling compelled to apologize for racial insensitivity. Notable News Now readers can judge for themselves whether Mr. Lind's commentary deserves the label of 'hateful bigotry" that was thrown at it by Shannon Reeves, who is Back's opponent, or whether the attacks reflect a Politically Correct mindset.
If the South had won the Civil War, where might our two countries be today? It is of course impossible to know, and as someone who proudly wears his great-grandfather's G.A.R. ring-he served in the 88th and 177th Ohio Volunteers, and his diary records the monitors bombarding Fort Fisher as he watched from a Union transport-I'm not entirely comfortable asking the question. But given how bad things have gotten in the old U.S.A., it's not hard to believe that history might have taken a better turn. Slavery of course would be long gone, for economic reasons. Race relations today in the Old South, in rural areas and cities such as Charleston, South Carolina, are generally better than they are in northern cities, so we might have done all right on that score. When southerners say they have a special relationship with blacks based on many generations of living together at close quarters, they have a point. The real damage to race relations in the south came not from slavery, but from Reconstruction, which would not have occurred if the South had won. And since the North would have been a separate nation, the vast black migration to northern cities that took place during World War II might not have happened.
Certainly Southerners would not be living under the iron rule of an all-powerful federal government, as we all do now. Northerners might not be, either; a Union defeat would have given states' rights a boost in both countries. The Tenth Amendment might still have the force of law even up north.
It is possible that both countries might still be republics, instead of a single empire. That transformation traces to America's entry into World War I, which might not have happened. Southern sympathy would probably have been with Britain and France, but the North, with a large German population, might well have lined up with the Kaiser (the Irish would have liked that, too).
No American entry into the war would have meant no Communism in Russia and no Hitler in Germany.
That's not a bad bargain. It is highly unlikely that the Confederacy would have embraced the cultural Marxism of Political Correctness that is fast becoming the official American state ideology. So at least part of North America would still stand for Western culture, Christianity and an appreciation of the differences between ladies and gentlemen.
Decency might have taken its stand in Dixie, along with some other good things such as an appreciation for the merits of rural life. Perhaps most important, Americans north and south might have a choice. If the North had turned left, as the United States has during this century, Northerners who didn't care for that development could cross the Mason Dixon line and become Southerners. That's an option more than a few of us Yankees would appreciate having, even if it did mean having to eat grits. What would my great-grandfather, Union Army sergeant Alfred G. Sturgiss, say to all of this? If he could see the sorry mess the country he fought for has become, I think he might sadly say that he'd fought for the wrong side.
Bill Lind is director of the Free Congress Foundation's Center for Cultural Conservatism.
I have just finished reading the book Under Whose God, authored by my long-time friend, Dr. Roy Branson.
When I was a doctoral candidate Dr. Branson was the president of the University and through the years I have flown him down to Texas and Florida to preach for me. When he comes he enjoys going with me to decorate the confederate graves in the local cemetery. A true so of the South, and long-time subscriber the Dixie Heritage Newsletter, Dr. Branson makes his home in Bristol,Tennessee.
All of Dr. Branson's books are powerful and thought provoking. But this particular book is a must read for everyone who wants to see our homeland returned to her former glory!
Every Patriot will surely mourn over the pages that tell of abandonment and loss of our Christian heritage.
This is a beautifully bound hardback book. It has a leather-like binding that will look good on your shelf and feel good in your hands. But more importantly, this book will move your head and your heart! Hopefully it will move your hands and feet too!
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YESTERDAY IN KEY WEST:
A Key West official has vowed that the United States' southernmost city plans to restore a Confederate memorial, despite the recent uproar over symbols of Confederacy following the tragic deaths of nine people in Charleston, South Carolina, in June.
Clayton Lopez, who works on the Key West City Commission and is the only black member of this seven-person panel, has insisted that he has no objection to the Confederate memorial, which is currently being restored.
"I'm glad that we're actually doing it," Lopez insisted to NPR, "We have to preserve it. Why would we hide what actually happened? Good or bad, it's what happened."
The memorial in question was originally erected in 1924 by the United Daughters of the Confederacy, where it has stood in Bayview Park in the city since.
But to highlight the cities appreciation of each army that served in the war, another monument, which is located just 140 yards away from the Confederate memorial, is being dedicated to two regiments from New York that were stationed in the city during the war.
These regiments both ended up perishing in Key West after they were struck down by a variety of diseases, which included yellow fever.
Speaking about the 91-year-old United Daughters of the Confederacy memorial, Tom Theisen, who has lived in Key West for most of his life, admitted that he'd never even been slightly perturbed by it before. However, because of the confederate flag debate, Theisen admitted to NPR that it has since been brought to his attention.
"I probably had seen it before," Theisen explained. "But it never crossed my mind until all the flag stuff."
Throughout the war the local sentiment was, for the most part, neutral. In fact, Tom Hambright, a historian for Key West's Monroe County Public Library, has explained that only seven people joined the Confederate forces, even though Stephen Mallory, a prominent Key West native, was hired as the secretary of the Confederate Navy.
Last night at 8:07 PM the Charleston Post & Courier reported that the only thing that had prevented the NCAA from allowing a bowl game in Charleston was the public display of the battle flag on the Statehouse. Well, the flag is down and the NCAA is rewarding the Scallywags with a bowl game.
The bottom line is that the NCAA is run by liberals, who make millions of dollars off the sweat of athletes (most of whom are young people of color) giving them nothing more than food, housing, and sub-par educational services in return. And they accuse our ancestors of advocating slavery?
Forgive my editorializing. Its my newsletter so I'm entitled.
After the whole Joe Paterno statue fiasco, the stripping of Penn State of their victories earned on a field of contest, and then the boycott of Indiana in the Final Four when the State passed a religious liberty bill in its Assembly, I was almost done with collegiate sports. Now this!
I'm convinced that anyone who is NOT a liberal (North or South) would do well to change the channel. Watch something else. MLB, NFL, NHL, and the NBA all overlap collegiate sports seasons. Professional Baseball and Hockey already have "farm" systems to raise their athletes. Minor League basketball and football would be better for the sports. And even though I'd miss going to a couple of Gator games each year, as someone whose been a season ticket holder for both Minor League baseball and hockey, I'd pay money to watch Minor League football.
While you are at it, send your kids to private colleges! They will get a better education. And the NCCAA (like the NCAA for religious schools) offers excellent athletic opportunities for the average student.
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YES, we are still giving a FREE eBook (PDF) copy of the book The Truth About the Confederate Flag to everyone who visits the website - so tell your friends - and your enemies!
Until next week,