The Whitewashing Of History

Jefferson Davis and Robert E Lee might be a bit miffed if they were alive today. The City of New Orleans has decided to remove their statues. Why you ask? The city officials see these statues not as historical markers from the Civil War, but as markers to slavery and racism. Mayor Mitch Landrieu said:

"We have not erased history. We are becoming part of the city's history by righting the wrong image these monuments represent and crafting a better, more complete future for all our children and for future generations."

But are they crafting a better and more complete future? Aren't they erasing and whitewashing an era in American history that needs to be remembered and learned from?

So what is history? Simply stated, history is the study and record of past events. It carries no prejudices. It is a complete compilation of facts, figures, and people who lived before us. History should be purely objective. Unfortunately, depending on who is writing the history books, history can become subjective. History can also be viewed differently depending on whose eyes are viewing it.

The Civil War was a period in American history that came close to tearing this republic apart. It pitted brother against brother in some cases and left an indelible mark on our land. There are numerous places throughout the South that serve as stark reminders and testaments to this bloody conflict. The battlegrounds, cemeteries, statues, and monuments remain, not only as markers of history, but also as great tools to teach our children and future generations the truth. That truth is a honest truth of good and bad.

Condoleezza Rice grew up in Birmingham, Alabama during the 1950's and 60's at a time when the South was racially segregated. Her perspective on this whitewashing of history is worthy of noting. In an interview with Fox News, Ms. Rice said the following:

"I'm a firm believer keep your history before you. So I don't actually want to rename things that were named for slave owners. I want us to look at the names and recognize what they did and be able to tell our kids what they did and for them to have a sense of their own history. When you start wiping out history, sanitizing history to make you feel better, it's a bad thing."

What Mayor Landrieu is doing in New Orleans is sanitizing history to make himself and others feel better. So where do you draw the line? Do you remove the statues and monuments of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson? They were also slave owners, as well as, our founding fathers. Do you remove Auschwitz, Dachau, Treblinka, and all the other Nazi concentration camps because they were places where thousands upon thousands of Jews were tortured and killed? Or do you use these historical places and monuments as real-world learning tools to teach our children and future generations the good, bad, and the ugliness of history? Obviously, there is a certain segment of our republic that has a real agenda of whitewashing American history. The Left seems to appoint themselves as the only arbiters of which historical markers are worthy of being displayed and which are not. That is a slippery slope and a dangerous game. You find yourself moving further and further away from a free and open republic and slipping down a slide that takes you closer and closer to a fascist state.


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