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Old 08-15-2017, 05:24 PM
Reddy Mercury Reddy Mercury is offline
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Can we limit the removal of statues to the Confederacy?

Can we limit the changing of names, and removal of statues, to blatantly racist phrases, or Confederates?

Because I have seen desires to tear down a statue of Theodore Roosevelt from the Museum of National History. I have seen desires to remove Woodrow Wilson's name from the University he was President of.

Can we limit the removal of statues and changing of names to actual traitors, and names of roads or schools which are actually offensive?

I don't support Trump or the violence as of late, but my fear is that there is a very Jacobin urge to "burn it all down". I don't want to see Roosevelt torn down.
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Old 08-15-2017, 05:41 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson were Confederates?

I saw a cartoon/meme today. Two buttons: One says 'Confederate monuments are important', and the other says 'Losers shouldn't get participation trophies'. A guy in a MAGA hat is sweating over the dilemma.
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Old 08-15-2017, 05:44 PM
Reddy Mercury Reddy Mercury is offline
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Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson were Confederates?

I saw a cartoon/meme today. Two buttons: One says 'Confederate monuments are important', and the other says 'Losers shouldn't get participation trophies'. A guy in a MAGA hat is sweating over the dilemma.
They weren't, but that hasn't stopped people from wanting their statues torn down as well. I'm saying can we limit the removal of statues to actual traitors like the Confederates? I'm fine with that.
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Old 08-15-2017, 06:11 PM
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This is the first I'm hearing this. Who's calling for this, nazis?
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Old 08-15-2017, 06:27 PM
Reddy Mercury Reddy Mercury is offline
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This is the first I'm hearing this. Who's calling for this, nazis?
https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...statue-protest

https://newrepublic.com/minutes/1244...ns-racism-good
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Old 08-16-2017, 12:20 AM
Kolak of Twilo Kolak of Twilo is offline
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Yeah, but no. Your first link is over a year old and has nothing to do with statues of the traitorous individuals who fought for the Confederacy.

Your link about Woodrow Wilson is from 2015. It also has nothing to do with the Confederacy.

The only calls at present to remove statues are of those who took up arms against the United States, thereby committing treason.

This isn't about Founding Fathers who owned slaves. It isn't about other leaders who held views we would consider racist today.

This is about individuals who took up arms against our government (rebels) and after the fact have been memorialized when they were actually traitors.

Not the same thing.
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Old 08-16-2017, 06:07 AM
Bricker Bricker is offline
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Originally Posted by Kolak of Twilo View Post
This isn't about Founding Fathers who owned slaves. It isn't about other leaders who held views we would consider racist today.

This is about individuals who took up arms against our government (rebels) and after the fact have been memorialized when they were actually traitors.

Not the same thing.
Suppose I come along and say, "Why should that be the rule? Anyone who owned slaves is a traitor -- a traitor against humanity. And why should we ever keep a statute honoring someone who actually owned slaves? It's repulsive!"

What's your defense against that argument, assuming you disagree?
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Old 08-16-2017, 06:33 AM
asahi asahi is offline
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Originally Posted by Kolak of Twilo View Post
Yeah, but no. Your first link is over a year old and has nothing to do with statues of the traitorous individuals who fought for the Confederacy.

Your link about Woodrow Wilson is from 2015. It also has nothing to do with the Confederacy.

The only calls at present to remove statues are of those who took up arms against the United States, thereby committing treason.

This isn't about Founding Fathers who owned slaves. It isn't about other leaders who held views we would consider racist today.

This is about individuals who took up arms against our government (rebels) and after the fact have been memorialized when they were actually traitors.

Not the same thing.
That might be how you view it, but there really indeed are activists who advocate removing statues and displays of honor for anyone who owned slaves or who might have engaged in behavior that wouldn't be acceptable by today's standards. I fully support removal of confederate statues because I understand the real reason they were erected in the first place, but it's worth asking 'How far is too far?'
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Old 08-16-2017, 07:17 AM
MEBuckner MEBuckner is offline
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I would say the critical distinction is between memorializing flawed human beings in spite of their moral failings; and memorializing them because of their moral failings.

The attempt to destroy the Union and organize the Confederacy as a new country was undoubtedly driven primarily by the desire to protect white supremacy and the institution of chattel slavery. We aren't talking about memorials to the improvements to the campus and curriculum at West Point during Robert E. Lee's tenure as Superintendent of the United States Military Academy, or commemorations of the increased effectiveness of the United States Army thanks to the leadership of Jefferson Davis during his service as Secretary of War under the Franklin Pierce Administration. The various memorials to specific Confederate leaders, or to Confederate soldiers in general, are memorializing their contribution to a failed struggle to establish a new country explicitly based on the perpetuation of white supremacy and black slavery.

Whatever skill the military leaders of the Confederacy showed, and whatever bravery and fortitude the regular soldiers of the Confederate Army displayed, there were still all fighting for a political system and a would-be country whose "cornerstone" was slavery and the propositions that "all white men are and of right ought to be entitled to equal civil and political rights" while "the servitude of the African race" was "the revealed will of the Almighty Creator".
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  #10  
Old 08-16-2017, 08:07 AM
iiandyiiii iiandyiiii is online now
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Monuments and memorials have always been, occasionally, moved, removed, or altered. There's nothing new with this. The Germans got rid of all the Nazi monuments, but didn't remove all other historical monuments. Removing some has always been done, and always will be done, and each generation will decide for itself whether or not they want certain monuments to remain, based on their own values. No matter what we do.

In 200 years our descendants might decide that Jefferson and/or Washington no longer meet their standard for honor and memorializing. This will be their decision, not ours, and it won't be because we did or didn't remove Confederate monuments today.
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Old 08-16-2017, 12:49 PM
JKellyMap JKellyMap is offline
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I would say the critical distinction is between memorializing flawed human beings in spite of their moral failings; and memorializing them because of their moral failings.
Excellently put, IMHO.
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Old 08-16-2017, 01:57 PM
Exapno Mapcase Exapno Mapcase is offline
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Suppose I come along and say, "Why should that be the rule? Anyone who owned slaves is a traitor -- a traitor against humanity. And why should we ever keep a statute honoring someone who actually owned slaves? It's repulsive!"

What's your defense against that argument, assuming you disagree?
The defense is that all of civilization is a matter of drawing lines. All controversial issues are compromised with some lines that have been drawn. Abortion is neither completely legal nor completely illegal; a line, better, a series of lines have been drawn about what can be done at different trimesters and different circumstances. Marriage is neither completely legal nor completely illegal. Heterosexual couples can marry and now hemosexual couples can but more than two people cannot nor can people under certain ages or within certain limits on consanguinity.

Since every single issue without exception involves drawing lines, this one can't be dismissed because a line is being drawn. The line today is actual traitors who fought a war to sustain slavery and white supremacy. That's a reasonable line that the overwhelming majority would support. Perhaps the line will move in the future. Likely it will, in fact. Either way, the discussion then will be about whether that line is appropriate and overwhelmingly agreed upon, not whether no lines should exist.
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Old 08-16-2017, 02:08 PM
Ravenman Ravenman is offline
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Suppose I come along and say, "Why should that be the rule? Anyone who owned slaves is a traitor -- a traitor against humanity. And why should we ever keep a statute honoring someone who actually owned slaves? It's repulsive!"

What's your defense against that argument, assuming you disagree?
I would look at the balance of what that person contributed to society versus what they cost society, and come up with an opinion on that calculation.

Currently, if someone's main impact on the world is that they killed a lot of people to protect slavery, and they were pretty efficient at it, I don't think that is something worth honoring.

On the other hand, let's say a hundred years in the future, society gets to a place where any association with slavery is viewed by most people as an indelible stain on that person's character. How are you going to argue with future generations that they are wrong, and that such statues must remain in place?
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Old 08-16-2017, 02:17 PM
John Mace John Mace is offline
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I would say the critical distinction is between memorializing flawed human beings in spite of their moral failings; and memorializing them because of their moral failings.

The attempt to destroy the Union and organize the Confederacy as a new country was undoubtedly driven primarily by the desire to protect white supremacy and the institution of chattel slavery. We aren't talking about memorials to the improvements to the campus and curriculum at West Point during Robert E. Lee's tenure as Superintendent of the United States Military Academy, or commemorations of the increased effectiveness of the United States Army thanks to the leadership of Jefferson Davis during his service as Secretary of War under the Franklin Pierce Administration. The various memorials to specific Confederate leaders, or to Confederate soldiers in general, are memorializing their contribution to a failed struggle to establish a new country explicitly based on the perpetuation of white supremacy and black slavery.

Whatever skill the military leaders of the Confederacy showed, and whatever bravery and fortitude the regular soldiers of the Confederate Army displayed, there were still all fighting for a political system and a would-be country whose "cornerstone" was slavery and the propositions that "all white men are and of right ought to be entitled to equal civil and political rights" while "the servitude of the African race" was "the revealed will of the Almighty Creator".
My first thought is to agree with this, pretty much 100%. However, my knowledge of history is not quite good enough. Did Washington and Jefferson take affirmative actions to ensure the continued existence of slavery in the newly minted USofA? I'm thinking they did, which if so, is one gigantic flaw to gloss over. Shouldn't there also be a point where we say: This one flaw is so large that we cannot in good conscience ignore it while celebrating this person's legacy?

What do we make of the person of Thomas Jefferson-- a man who enslaved his own children? Would you be happy to continue celebrating FDR if you found out that he had a child out of wedlock whom he kept as a domestic servant, and who was unable to live the life of a free person?

I don't even know the answers to these questions myself. I just don't think it's quite so easy to compartmentalize these things and celebrate the "good parts".
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Old 08-16-2017, 02:20 PM
Malthus Malthus is offline
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Way I look at it is to ask - what is being honoured by a public display of a statue or the like? Is it something that we, today, feel ought to be publicly honored?

I'm not fussed by the moral failings of the individual in question - if (say) we have a statue to the inventor of a cure for cancer, it is this accomplishment we are publicly honouring - if she was a horrible human being, that doesn't really figure into the equation.

For monuments that are really old and whose significance has passed into history, different criteria apply: like any issue of historical preservation, in such cases the issue is whether the thing has inherent artistic or historical merit, so as to be worth preserving - but the location isn't usually important.

In the case of the Confederate monuments, they are publicly honouring things that most of us agree ought not to be so honoured, so I see no reason not to remove them. They are not so ancient as to become themselves of inherent historic significance.
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Old 08-16-2017, 02:22 PM
Richard Parker Richard Parker is online now
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My first thought is to agree with this, pretty much 100%. However, my knowledge of history is not quite good enough. Did Washington and Jefferson take affirmative actions to ensure the continued existence of slavery in the newly minted USofA? I'm thinking they did, which if so, is one gigantic flaw to gloss over. Shouldn't there also be a point where we say: This one flaw is so large that we cannot in good conscience ignore it while celebrating this person's legacy?
I think you're missing the point. The reason we celebrate Jefferson is not his actions regarding slavery. It's not about weighing his life choices. It's about which choices we are celebrating.

Of course, there is probably a separate point to be made that no matter what quality is being celebrated, it's possible that the celebrant has other negative qualities so publicly associated with him that it is unwise or disingenuous to celebrate whatever thing you are choosing. Maybe that is the case with Jefferson, but I think it's a separate argument from the point being made by MEBuckner.
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Old 08-16-2017, 02:28 PM
Malthus Malthus is offline
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My first thought is to agree with this, pretty much 100%. However, my knowledge of history is not quite good enough. Did Washington and Jefferson take affirmative actions to ensure the continued existence of slavery in the newly minted USofA? I'm thinking they did, which if so, is one gigantic flaw to gloss over. Shouldn't there also be a point where we say: This one flaw is so large that we cannot in good conscience ignore it while celebrating this person's legacy?

What do we make of the person of Thomas Jefferson-- a man who enslaved his own children? Would you be happy to continue celebrating FDR if you found out that he had a child out of wedlock whom he kept as a domestic servant, and who was unable to live the life of a free person?

I don't even know the answers to these questions myself. I just don't think it's quite so easy to compartmentalize these things and celebrate the "good parts".
Way I see it is this: the point of erecting a statue of (say) Washington is generally to symbolize or to publicly honour his role in the foundation of the nation.

He was a slaveowner. He therefore supported slavery. This is undeniable, and an indelible mark against his character as a person - but that doesn't change the reason why his statue is placed in a public space.

I'm not against having public statues of people who have done evil things - as long as the very purpose in so honouring them, is to honour some outstanding good thing they also did. I don't think it would be a good idea to vet such memorials for personal morality.
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Old 08-16-2017, 02:33 PM
MEBuckner MEBuckner is offline
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Shouldn't there also be a point where we say: This one flaw is so large that we cannot in good conscience ignore it while celebrating this person's legacy?
That's certainly a reasonable question, and one we could ask about, say Woodrow Wilson.

My point is that we didn't carve George Washington's face into the side of a mountain to commemorate his role in preserving the continued existence of slavery in the newly-independent nation. Jefferson Davis, on the other hand, had his face carved into the side of a mountain entirely because he was the first and last President of the Confederate States of America. And, while there have been a lot of attempts to obscure the fact that being President of the Confederate States of America was tantamount to "led the faction that started and fought a bloody war to preserve slavery", that's all fundamentally revisionist bullshit, and is far more of an attempt to "erase our history" than tearing down some statue is.
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Old 08-16-2017, 02:54 PM
Chronos Chronos is offline
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All humans have done good and evil alike (though some have done more of one or the other). It's perfectly acceptable to put up statues commemorating the good things that people have done, and not acceptable to put up statues commemorating the evil things. If someone wants to put up a statue commemorating Washington's role in creating our nation, and his insistence on not being a king, well, that's fine, because those were both good things he did. If someone wants to put up a statue commemorating Washington's ownership of slaves, that's not fine, because that's evil. And if someone wants to put up a statue commemorating Washington's defeat of the evil Martian vampires, then that's absurd, and we should question the real motives of the person wanting that statue. The same statue can be acceptable or not, depending on why it's erected.

Most statues of Lee are commemorating his treason, which is not fine. Some claim to be commemorating his loyalty to his state, but that's as absurd as the Washington vampire statue, because he committed treason against his state, too, and so we should question the real motives behind those statues. And unlike Washington (or either Roosevelt, or Wilson), I'm having a hard time thinking of anything Lee did that really does warrant commemorating.
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Old 08-16-2017, 03:00 PM
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All humans have done good and evil alike (though some have done more of one or the other). It's perfectly acceptable to put up statues commemorating the good things that people have done, and not acceptable to put up statues commemorating the evil things. If someone wants to put up a statue commemorating Washington's role in creating our nation, and his insistence on not being a king, well, that's fine, because those were both good things he did. If someone wants to put up a statue commemorating Washington's ownership of slaves, that's not fine, because that's evil. And if someone wants to put up a statue commemorating Washington's defeat of the evil Martian vampires, then that's absurd, and we should question the real motives of the person wanting that statue. The same statue can be acceptable or not, depending on why it's erected.

Most statues of Lee are commemorating his treason, which is not fine. Some claim to be commemorating his loyalty to his state, but that's as absurd as the Washington vampire statue, because he committed treason against his state, too, and so we should question the real motives behind those statues. And unlike Washington (or either Roosevelt, or Wilson), I'm having a hard time thinking of anything Lee did that really does warrant commemorating.
If Virginia chose to secede how is Gen. Lee committing treason against Virginia? That's like saying George Washington committed treason against the colonies.
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Old 08-16-2017, 03:04 PM
John Mace John Mace is offline
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I think you're missing the point. The reason we celebrate Jefferson is not his actions regarding slavery. It's not about weighing his life choices. It's about which choices we are celebrating.
Sorry, but it's you who are missing the point. My point, and perhaps I was not clear enough, is to question whether there are some actions that are so hideous that they preclude us from ignoring them while "celebrating the good stuff".

To use an absurd example just to make a point, we wouldn't expect the Westminster Kennel Club to use Hitler in their logo based on his legendary love of dogs, right? Even though loving dogs is a good thing, Hitler did a lot of very bad things. But it's not enough to say "Well, Hitler is only known for the bad things", but that's circular logic. He's "only known for the bad things" because we have judged those bad things to overshadow any talk of the good things.

My question is: To what extent did Jefferson and/or Washington fight (even if verbally) to preserve the institution of slavery, and if they did to some significant degree, should we not reconsider our celebrating any of the good things they may have done? Surely there is some point where the bad thing overshadows the good thing. As noted, I'm not enough of a student of history to know just how much either of those men fought to keep slavery alive. I do know that TJ kept his own children in bondage, which seems pretty monstrous to me, apart from anything else one might say.

Again, this is more of a question than a statement. Those who know more about history could perhaps answer my question.

Last edited by John Mace; 08-16-2017 at 03:05 PM.
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Old 08-16-2017, 03:06 PM
ElvisL1ves ElvisL1ves is offline
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Was he a citizen of Virginia, one of a loose association of sovereign states, or was he a citizen of the United States and an oath-bearing officer of its Army?

You'll find the answer in the Constitution.
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Old 08-16-2017, 03:12 PM
ElvisL1ves ElvisL1ves is offline
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What do we make of the person of Thomas Jefferson-- a man who enslaved his own children?
We honor him most strongly on the basis of his noble words about equality and freedom that are at the foundation of who we consider our nation to be. His own hypocrisy could not be more rank or more adamantly in opposition to his words, and it cannot be separated or ignored. Yes, it's complicated.

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I don't even know the answers to these questions myself. I just don't think it's quite so easy to compartmentalize these things and celebrate the "good parts".
There aren't obvious answers because everyone under consideration for a monument, or its removal, was a human, not an angel or a devil. So you have to be clear what exactly it is about them that merits the decision. In the case of the Confederate leaders, the memorials are all about what they fought for (slavery) and how they did it (treason). The rest has always been a bunch of lies.
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Old 08-16-2017, 03:17 PM
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To paraphrase something I read yesterday, there are only like 8 good statues in the US and 3 of them are of dinosaurs.
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Old 08-16-2017, 04:41 PM
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We can easily draw a line here at "tried to overthrow the Constitution" for American figures. And now we have pretty much every mainstream liberal on record as supporting drawing a bright line there, so we'll never have to worry about this in the future.

For foreign figures like Vladimir Lenin, they can grind those statues into dust and should.
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Old 08-16-2017, 05:11 PM
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...

In the case of the Confederate monuments, they are publicly honouring things that most of us agree ought not to be so honoured, so I see no reason not to remove them. They are not so ancient as to become themselves of inherent historic significance.
Apparently they radiate knowledge, which is why some people say to leave them up so that we can learn from them. People who don't like to read books, I'd guess.
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Old 08-16-2017, 06:31 PM
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We can easily draw a line here at "tried to overthrow the Constitution" for American figures. And now we have pretty much every mainstream liberal on record as supporting drawing a bright line there, so we'll never have to worry about this in the future.

For foreign figures like Vladimir Lenin, they can grind those statues into dust and should.
You think the Lenin statue in Seattle should be destroyed?
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Old 08-16-2017, 06:40 PM
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Not an Elections thread.
Moved.
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Old 08-16-2017, 06:45 PM
Reddy Mercury Reddy Mercury is offline
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You think the Lenin statue in Seattle should be destroyed?
Yes. Lenin was directly responsible for the deaths of at least 1 million people, possibly 5 million if you include the deaths from the famine during his rule. Should a statue of Josef Stalin stand in America, or Chairman Mao? Or for that matter, a statue of Mussolini or a monument dedicated to the Khmer Rouge?

Also, Lenin was our enemy in his lifetime. It's often forgotten but we did send troops to fight in the Russian Civil War against the Reds.
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Old 08-16-2017, 07:42 PM
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Yes. Lenin was directly responsible for the deaths of at least 1 million people, possibly 5 million if you include the deaths from the famine during his rule. Should a statue of Josef Stalin stand in America, or Chairman Mao? Or for that matter, a statue of Mussolini or a monument dedicated to the Khmer Rouge?

Also, Lenin was our enemy in his lifetime. It's often forgotten but we did send troops to fight in the Russian Civil War against the Reds.
i'd say no. It's privately owned and on private property. Lenin was a pretty bad man, but unlike him, I think you have a right to private property, and the government shouldn't be destroying privately owned statues.
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Old 08-16-2017, 08:06 PM
Chronos Chronos is offline
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Virginia willingly joined the Union and ratified the Constitution. When Lee committed treason, he rejected that joining and ratification. Thus, he betrayed Virginia.

And why is there a statue of Lenin in Seattle? Apparently because some individual wanted one, if it's on private property, but has that individual ever stated his or her reasons?
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Old 08-16-2017, 08:12 PM
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Virginia willingly joined the Union and ratified the Constitution. When Lee committed treason, he rejected that joining and ratification. Thus, he betrayed Virginia.
Didn't Virginia willingly secede?

Why yes it did. So Lee was loyal to the then current state.

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And why is there a statue of Lenin in Seattle? Apparently because some individual wanted one, if it's on private property, but has that individual ever stated his or her reasons?
Not sure. It doesn't bother me to see it though.
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Old 08-16-2017, 08:50 PM
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All Confederate statues, monuments and the like should be erased from the face of the earth. Stone Mountain make take a nuke, but I'm good with that. Then deny any and all Federal services and benefits to anybody who wears, displays or has tattooed upon themselves any Confederate flag or symbol. Fuck all of 'em.
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Old 08-16-2017, 09:52 PM
adaher adaher is online now
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You think the Lenin statue in Seattle should be destroyed?
Oh yeah. More sore losers who can't move on. Whose idea was that shit anyway?
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Old 08-16-2017, 10:36 PM
doreen doreen is online now
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Since every single issue without exception involves drawing lines, this one can't be dismissed because a line is being drawn. The line today is actual traitors who fought a war to sustain slavery and white supremacy. That's a reasonable line that the overwhelming majority would support. Perhaps the line will move in the future. Likely it will, in fact. Either way, the discussion then will be about whether that line is appropriate and overwhelmingly agreed upon, not whether no lines should exist.
Actually, it seems to me the current line is actual traitors. Ever see a statue of Benedict Arnold? There are two "memorials" to him that I know of - a boot monument in Saratoga National park and a plaque at West Point. Both of them conspicuously omit his name.
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Old 08-16-2017, 10:44 PM
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I agree that the line can be moved if societal sensibilities change, but if society doesn't change, only a certain subset of liberals do, and they start demonstrating at the Jefferson Memorial, they'll deserve the derision they get. Most prominent liberals are now on record drawing as clear a line as you can, and some have gone so far as to explicitly defend former slaveholders like Washington and Jefferson. I'm not sure how one can flip flop on that without damaging their reputation.
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Old 08-16-2017, 10:49 PM
Martini Enfield Martini Enfield is offline
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I read somewhere that in the years after Independence in India, rather a lot of statues of British Royals, Governors, Generals and the like got relocated - in some cases to a park set aside for them.

I've got no dog in the fight in the US at the moment but I don't see a problem with moving statues of Confederate figures to a "Confederate Memorial Park" (not a shitty abandoned lot in a weird part of town, but an actual, properly maintained city park) so people who want to see them can see them and people who don't want to be reminded of the injustices their ancestors suffered every time they go to pay their rates bill at the town hall don't have to be.
  #38  
Old 08-16-2017, 10:51 PM
Chronos Chronos is offline
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Quote:
Quoth octopus:

Didn't Virginia willingly secede?
No, because there was no legal means for it to do so, it having already ratified the Constitution. It tried extralegal means, but those also failed.

EDIT:
Quote:
Quoth Martini Enfield:

I've got no dog in the fight in the US at the moment but I don't see a problem with moving statues of Confederate figures to a "Confederate Memorial Park" (not a shitty abandoned lot in a weird part of town, but an actual, properly maintained city park)...
No, not a city park. Why should tax dollars go towards memorializing traitors? If any of the deplorables want to set up a park on their own privately-owned, privately-maintained land, they're welcome to do so.

Last edited by Chronos; 08-16-2017 at 10:54 PM.
  #39  
Old 08-16-2017, 10:57 PM
GIGObuster GIGObuster is offline
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Suppose I come along and say, "Why should that be the rule? Anyone who owned slaves is a traitor -- a traitor against humanity. And why should we ever keep a statute honoring someone who actually owned slaves? It's repulsive!"

What's your defense against that argument, assuming you disagree?
AFAIK the confederacy did claim to follow the real design of the founding fathers. The point here is that this shows how empty this argument is, specially when it comes from Trump too. Both sides in this case did/do respect the founding fathers, even IIUC for different reasons.

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics...f-july/454464/
Quote:
In a 2009 paper in the Journal of Southern History, historian Paul Quigley wrote that while some Southerners were conflicted with celebrating the holiday, acknowledgement of the day continued on. In Charleston, S.C., he points out, a specially appointed five-member committee decided that "public procession, solemn oration, and political banquet ought to be omitted on the present occasion," but offices would would be closed for the Fourth.

Before the war, the meaning of the holiday was already taking on different flavors. In the North, abolitionists used its language of freedom to call for the end of slavery. In the South, secessionists used its language of willful rebellion to call for a new state, inciting that the North had not lived up to the Declaration of Independence's promise. Quigley goes on to explain how the Fourth of July ambivalence was "part of their attempt to resolve tensions between southernness and Americanness."

But most importantly, the Fourth of July represented a shared celebration and an identity the North and South could rejoin after the war.
In essence: Most Northerners and most Southerners would appreciate the founding fathers enough to dismiss ideas of the fringe of the fringe about also removing statues of Washington or other founding fathers.

Last edited by GIGObuster; 08-16-2017 at 10:59 PM.
  #40  
Old 08-16-2017, 10:57 PM
adaher adaher is online now
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No, because there was no legal means for it to do so, it having already ratified the Constitution. It tried extralegal means, but those also failed.

.
Now this is an interesting statement. Can a state be a traitor? Seems to me that Wilson's Fourteen Points addressed the right of people to self determination. If the people of a state don't want to be in the Union anymore, don't they have a fundamental right to no longer be a part of it?

This is aside from the legal issue of whether a state can renounce the Constitution. Legal precedent says they cannot. But it seems to me that around the world, peoples who want to leave the larger nation to establish their own nation is a pretty well established human right. Labelling a whole people traitorous sounds pretty sinister to me.
  #41  
Old 08-16-2017, 11:20 PM
Martini Enfield Martini Enfield is offline
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Originally Posted by Chronos View Post
No, because there was no legal means for it to do so, it having already ratified the Constitution. It tried extralegal means, but those also failed.

EDIT:

No, not a city park. Why should tax dollars go towards memorializing traitors? If any of the deplorables want to set up a park on their own privately-owned, privately-maintained land, they're welcome to do so.
Because it's still part of the region's history. Sure, history is written by the winners, but pretending it never happened because fuck those guys isn't helpful either.
  #42  
Old 08-16-2017, 11:25 PM
adaher adaher is online now
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Sure, as long as it's clear that it's history. See, George Washington is history, but he's also our present. He is a revered figure, and so we honor him literally everywhere. He's on the $1 bill! The legacy of Washington positively permeates our national life.

Robert E. Lee, by contrast, whatever we might think of him as a man, is on the ash heap of history. He should be remembered, but he should not be part of our national fabric the way Washington is. That means he shouldn't be on money, or have stuff named after him, or have statues in prominent, present-day publicly used places.

This is a tough issue pretty much everywhere in the world. I can only imagine the debates the Russians must be having and I know this is a constant thorn in Japan's politics. Germany seems to have more of a consensus that Nazis should never be honored, but I bet they are a little more conflicted about Bismarck and Kaiser Wilhelm.
  #43  
Old 08-16-2017, 11:44 PM
Martini Enfield Martini Enfield is offline
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I suspect the Germans figure that if there's any statues of Bismarck or Kaiser Wilhelm about, they should be left where they are since they're not hurting anyone.

I agree Confederate personages shouldn't be on US currency, but I see no problem with there being historic statues of them on public land.

I'd be a little more concerned about someone wanting to cast a new statue of Lee and put it in front of the town hall, though.
  #44  
Old 08-16-2017, 11:47 PM
Hector_St_Clare Hector_St_Clare is offline
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In 200 years our descendants might decide that Jefferson and/or Washington no longer meet their standard for honor and memorializing. This will be their decision, not ours, and it won't be because we did or didn't remove Confederate monuments today.
Generally agreed, but of course one should bear in mind the pendulum can swing both ways. Stalin is getting a resurgence of popularity in Russia now and new statues to him are being built. It's not inconceivable that someday people like Saddam Hussayn and Qadhafi might get a resurgence of popularity as well. One of the guys who physically organized the demolition of a Saddam statue in 2003 now says he regrets it, because he thinks post-2003 Iraq has been worse than Saddam's regime ever was.

I am dubious and certainly hope that Lee, Jackson etc. won't ever get such a rehabilitation, since in my view they don't deserve it.
  #45  
Old 08-16-2017, 11:54 PM
Hector_St_Clare Hector_St_Clare is offline
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I suspect the Germans figure that if there's any statues of Bismarck or Kaiser Wilhelm about, they should be left where they are since they're not hurting anyone..
Wilhelm did carry out a genocide too (and to the tune of 40% of the population):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herero...maqua_genocide

Rereading the article makes me realize it was even worse than I remembered.
  #46  
Old 08-16-2017, 11:57 PM
foolsguinea foolsguinea is offline
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No one is entitled to a statue.
  #47  
Old 08-17-2017, 12:02 AM
Peter Morris Peter Morris is online now
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Wouldn't this be against the Constitution? Doesn't it say something about the Limitation of Statues?
  #48  
Old 08-17-2017, 12:06 AM
GIGObuster GIGObuster is offline
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Wouldn't this be against the Constitution? Doesn't it say something about the Limitation of Statues?
:Groan!:

  #49  
Old 08-17-2017, 12:49 AM
AK84 AK84 is online now
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Originally Posted by Hector_St_Clare View Post
Generally agreed, but of course one should bear in mind the pendulum can swing both ways. Stalin is getting a resurgence of popularity in Russia now and new statues to him are being built. It's not inconceivable that someday people like Saddam Hussayn and Qadhafi might get a resurgence of popularity as well. One of the guys who physically organized the demolition of a Saddam statue in 2003 now says he regrets it, because he thinks post-2003 Iraq has been worse than Saddam's regime ever was.

I am dubious and certainly hope that Lee, Jackson etc. won't ever get such a rehabilitation, since in my view they don't deserve it.
Yes as the man said to the BBC.
  #50  
Old 08-17-2017, 02:18 AM
Bricker Bricker is offline
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Originally Posted by MEBuckner View Post
Whatever skill the military leaders of the Confederacy showed, and whatever bravery and fortitude the regular soldiers of the Confederate Army displayed, there were still all fighting for a political system and a would-be country whose "cornerstone" was slavery and the propositions that "all white men are and of right ought to be entitled to equal civil and political rights" while "the servitude of the African race" was "the revealed will of the Almighty Creator".
And U. S. Grant defended a political system that denied the vote to women and relegated black citizens to second-class status. To say nothing of the horrible record the North had on LGBTQ issues.

Is there any room to consider that perhaps Grant was a product of being born in 1822, and it's perhaps unreasonable to expect he was aware of the damage his insistence on cis-normative identity was?
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