|remember the 54th wrote:
Apologies for the tardiness of this post -- it was/is an extremely busy week. I'm sure this will be viewed as "inflammatory" by what so far appears to be a rather homogenous board community, but that is of no consequence to me. I feel this needs to be heard, and if you disagree, then why have this forum in the first place? You are all better off posting and chatting about "safe" topics that really don't advance our understandings of one another.
It deeply saddens me that 40 years after the Civil Rights Movement, and 142 years after the collapse of slavery, a great number of white Americans have been unable or unwilling to develop the courage, character, and compass necessary to see things from the perspective of the disenfranchised and take a stand for justice. Your argument is really rather silly, if not absurd. One can't possibly contend, on a website called "civilwarinteractive', that the current government and its constituents need only to be concerned with current events. Are you seriously trying to advance the argument that because no current African American was alive before 1865, there is no place for a discussion on the effects of slavery?
I have heard so many white people express similar views that I wonder if this is simply a common thread amongst whites, as stereotypical as such a query is. Is there some deep rooted fear whites have, of black equality and empowerment? It is just difficult to see how you, or many others on this board could not see a contradiction between this:
Discussions about the impact and ramifications of a four year event are upheld as valid, worthy, and even sacred, while arguments about the 340 year event (North and South America) that precipitated it and led directly or indirectly to it are insignificant, can't possibly show any bearing on our lives today, and should simply not be made!!
Next to Jesus Christ, the Civil War is the most widely researched and written about topic in America. Throughout the South people do reenactments (for no reason) of the war, and one of the most controversial symbols of this country's history is of course the Confederate flag. There are over 8,000 hate groups and/or white supremacist organizations in the U.S., all having the express purpose of curbing the rights and freedoms of people of color, and thereby returning them to a pre Civil War system of impotence. Slavery isn't important or worthy of an apology? The only way one could really believe this, in my opinion, is if they are either a white supremacist, or if they really don't know much about slavery. You did suggest that slavery may not have really been that bad, so I am not sure how to assess you:
"If a former slave posts here, I might offer my regrets to them as to what they MAY HAVE suffered through."
If you don't know much about slavery, then you should study before you offer your opinions. Slavery has bequeathed an absurd amount of wealth and privilege to white Americans (which you simultaneously take for granted and fight hard to protect), and has cripled, in multiple ways, the African/African American masses.
In conclusion, if slavery doesn't matter in America, then nothing matters --not religion, not education, not economics, not politics, nothing. As Dr. W.E.B. DuBois once said, "the problem of the 20th century will be the problem of the color line." This is still true in the 21st century, and you can present no evidence, save your opinions, that seriously dispute this.
I know plenty about slavery and I've never said it doesn't still have effects today. But we CAN'T quantify what those effects are, nor can we know all those who have been affected by it. I've already given my reasons for not offering a formal apology and aren't going to revisit it.
And who said slavery "may not have been that bad?" I know it wasn't me. I'm not even sure who you are addressing your post to. If I had to guess, you're taking everything you've ever read on the internet and are acting as if all of what you've said was written by people here. Show me where someone wrote that the effects shouldn't be discussed. How do you even know that everyone here is white, as you contend?
Slavery was bad. Damn bad, but doesn't change what I wrote above. What else am I supposed to say? I guess the fact that Abraham Lincoln is my favorite President would run counter to the presumptions you have and the stereotyping you seem to have done.
There are probably more opportunities today for blacks than ever before. Instead of using the excuse of slavery for whatever ills people, a more positive outlook might be more beneficial. Maybe it's easier today for people to act as a victim of whatever they can think of.
Last edited on Tue Apr 10th, 2007 05:00 pm by