Your Opinions



You seem to be reasonably educated and intelligent. Are you, by chance, a fellow Mensan?

If you can make an effort to be objective it might be possible to further your education on the causes and results of the War for Southern Independence. At your request I would be pleased to provide you with an excellent, well-documented reading list….even to provide the books.

If Thomas Jefferson or Robert E. Lee were your ancestor would you be proud or ashamed?

I have great reverence for my ancestors who fought in the War for American Independence and for their many grandsons and great grandsons who proudly fought for that same cause in the War for Southern Independence, as they so often stated in their "letters home" during that war. Many of them gave their lives for the flag that you seem to equate in your mind with slavery, National Socialism, and the KKK.

I’m sure you are aware that the flag of the United States of America flew over slavery and slave ships for many many years and is the official flag of the KKK. Do you still swear allegiance to it? If you do, does it conjure an image in your mind of the hundreds of thousands of slaves that were transported, sold, and constitutionally kept in slavery beneath it? Are you aware of the original 13th Amendment, endorsed by President Lincoln?

One of my third great-grandfathers, Phillip Jefferson Ham, who was wounded at Chicamauga and recovered in time to re-join his unit and lose his left arm in the battle of Peachtree Creek, was a founding director of what was, in 1887, The Normal College at Troy, Alabama, and which is now Troy University with campuses all over the world. My family has always revered education and taught us that it should be approached with an open mind and with reason, objectivity and understanding.

While living in Houston BTD (before the depression of the middle 80’s) I employed a good friend of mine and furnished him with a very liberal expense account. Howard was brilliant (he’s dead now) but was very tight with a buck. One night after we had a few drinks at the River Oaks Grill he, as usual, ducked the tab. I "got on" him. "Howard, you ‘ol tight-ass, I can understand you not pickin’ up a tab with YOUR money but if you paid this one up you’d put in on your expense account and I’d end up paying it. The least you could do is to buy me a drink with MY money".

Howard talked like W. C. Fields. "Ah, Rick my boy, you don’t understand. It’s all in your mind. When you see a tab you see something lovely and you immediately reach for it. When I see a tab I see a rattlesnake coiled to strike and only a damn fool would reach for a coiled rattlesnake".

I’m afraid that Howard was right and that all of the books and education in the world cannot change what is "all in your mind". When I see ANY symbol of the Confederacy my eyes mist a little and when I hear a plaintive version of "Dixie" or even Joan Baez (before it was politically incorrect) singing "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down" I usually have to reach for my handkerchief. I hope that those things don’t make you physically ill.

As a wise historian said, "If the South had won the war our history books would call it "The Second Revolutionary War" and you sir, living in a state in which I lived for many years and love, might be pledging allegiance to the Confederate flag. Such is life and the vicissitudes of fate.

If you would like the reading list please let me know by reply. If you would prefer that I begin to have books delivered to you please furnish me an address.


Rick Boswell