Columnist needs to get her facts straight


Dear editor:

Hate is in the heart — not on a piece of cloth. It is not surprising that Jeannie Babb Taylor does not choose to see it that way.

The education system in this country has gone away from teaching that truth, above all else, should be what we seek. Unfortunately truth was replaced by political correctness. It is not wise in these times to go against the prevailing way of thinking. If so, you face the wrath of people who can use their media power to label you as racist or a “good old boy.”

When Taylor received her liberal education in journalism, I guess she missed the day they talked about journalistic integrity. You see, journalists or reporters have been blessed with a job in which they can uncover the truth. In doing so, sometimes wrongs can be righted.

Mrs. Taylor, have you sought the truth? Did you bother to go back and do your history research? If so, you must have missed the fact that no slave ships sailed under the Confederate flag — yep, all under the stars and stripes of the United States, Yankee flags, Mrs. Taylor, New England Yankee flags.

Did you bother to even learn that there was a movement in the South at that time to rid themselves of slavery — without war? Or did you find out that the Confederate Constitution barred the importation of slaves to the Confederate States? How about the fact that the Emancipation Proclamation freed only slaves in the Southern states? This proclamation did not free any slaves in the Northern states. These were freed by an amendment to the Constitution well after the war. Yes, that’s right, Mrs. Taylor, even Gen. Grant himself kept his slaves until after the war was over, even though Southern generals such as Lee and Jackson had already freed their own before or during the war.

How about looking into a federal study which was completed after the war called the “Slave Narratives”? This study was cut short when it was discovered through slave interviews that the “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” version of Northern thought was a falsehood. It was learned in this study that the vast majority of slaves were treated as members of the home.

Some slaves took up arms in the service of their Confederate nation, of their own free will. These are almost always overlooked when reporting about black history. These men were doubly courageous for their actions. Did you even know that over 70 percent of all Southern soldiers owned no slaves? If they did not own slaves, then why fight for slavery?

The bottom line is that Taylor did not seek the truth. She simply put down what she thinks everyone is comfortable hearing, something, which she knows that when presented in her “light,” would create a controversy and sell papers. I know this letter will probably not be published. However, when all is said and done I can say that I spoke the truth.

When the word slavery is mentioned in society, what do we think of? We immediately think of the South. However, slavery has existed since the beginning of documented time. Every race, has at one time or another become enslaved to others. This includes white or Caucasian races. In the 16th and 17th centuries, Muslim ships raided Ireland and Northern Britain’s coastline, taking back white slaves. Some anthropologists believe these may be the ancestors of the blue-eyed Kurds, which were gassed by Saddam Hussein. Slavery even exists today in the Orient and Third World countries. Yet because of people like Taylor, we still think of the South when slavery is mentioned.

The Civil War was fought for the same reason that all wars are fought — power and money. The South continues to this day to pay a price economically for losing that war. You can find that salaries in the Northern job market pay much more than comparable jobs in the South. Home and property values are also inflated in the North. When homes and property are sold and the owners move South, it in turn raises our property values. Along with this inflation comes the inevitable tax increase. Since our wages have not kept up the pace, we in turn end up losing again because we cannot afford to keep our homes.

Mrs. Taylor, please try to look deep in yourself and find the truth. If you can find the truth in yourself, you may find it in others. I, as well as many others like me, do not support the enslavement of people.

In closing I would quote, “Why is it that we spend all our lives seeking the truth, then deny it when it is found?”. I am a proud member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. I am also a proud American. I hope that others will in turn seek the truth before making up their minds on these issues.

The Southern soldier fought for something which all American soldiers fought for —they fought for what they believed in. Although not uniquely American, it is a common trait all American soldiers share. It is for this courage that we honor these men with our flags and monuments. I owe them this; we owe them this.

Pete Allen, Asheville, N.C.

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