I’ve struggled to get my point across with regard to the issue of Confederate monuments. Former South Carolina teacher Winston McCuen (and people like him) are part of why I can’t join in with so many on the right who seem determined to morally rationalize why we ever began honoring the Confederacy and why we should continue to do so. McCuen’s letter to the editor published today in The State argues that slavery was a good thing, even for the blacks who were treated like cattle.
Teach truth about the virtues of slavery
The recent controversy about Confederate monuments and flags ultimately revolves around one man and one question. The man is John C. Calhoun, the great philosopher and statesman from South Carolina, and the spiritual founding father of the Confederacy. The question is: Was Calhoun right or wrong when he argued, from the 1830s until his death in 1850, that the South’s Christian slavery was “a positive good” and “a great good” for both whites and blacks?
If Calhoun was wrong, then there may be grounds for removing monuments and flags.
But if Calhoun was right, the monuments and flags should stay and be multiplied, blacks should be freed from oppressive racial integration so they can show the world how much they can do without white folk, the Southern states should seize their freedom and independence, and the North should beg the South’s pardon for the war.
Calhoun’s views are unpopular today because, since 1865, the Yankee-imposed education system has taught all Americans that the South’s Christian slavery was evil and that everyone is equal. But unpopularity cannot make a truth untrue, and popularity cannot make error truth.
This is not McCuen’s first time getting publicity for his views. Years ago he was working as a history teacher but was fired for refusing to remove a Confederate flag from his classroom.
I’m sure many will argue that McCuen is an outlier or a lone wolf, and in some ways he may be. However he is definitely not alone in holding some of these opinions. I have encountered many people in my life who made similar arguments, a surprising number really, considering that I tend not to continue associating with people after I’ve heard them express such opinions.
Worrying about what the left might do next is less of an issue for me than knowingly allying myself with people like this. This is not a person who understands what liberty means. He has no grasp of what “all men are created equal” means. He has a pretty questionable idea of what “Christian” means as well.
I don’t want to hear the arguments about how the Civil War wasn’t about slavery. If it was even a little bit about slavery, it was about slavery, and the Confederate men being honored with statues were fighting to keep people enslaved. That’s not worthy of our respect. They chose the wrong side.