Mississippi Flag and Proclamation

Mississippi, the state whose Declaration of Causes for secession proclaimed clearly, “Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery,” and the state that was the site of the murder of three civil rights workers by the KKK in the 1960s, is in the confederate heritage news these days. As of now there isn’t going to be any change to Mississippi’s state flag, which incorporates confederate flag imagery. Now we see a civil rights attorney in Mississippi filed a lawsuit “alleging that the Confederate imagery incites racial violence and infringes on the 14th- Amendment protections of black residents.” The attorney, Carlos Moore, says in his lawsuit, “Mississippi’s official state flag with the embedded Confederate battle flag is tantamount to hateful government speech that both has a discriminatory intent and disparate impact. The current official state flag … encourages or incites private citizens to commit acts of racial violence.” This suit appears to have an uphill battle to convince a judge of its merits.

Mississippi’s governor, Phil Bryant, issued a proclamation for confederate heritage month in April. Interestingly, the proclamation seems to have no mention of the reason for forming the confederacy–what the confederacy’s vice president called its “cornerstone:” slavery and white supremacy. There is some pushback in Mississippi for this historical amnesia. High school history teacher Timothy Abram writes, “If we are to learn about Confederate Heritage, it is of paramount importance that we first understand why we (Mississippians) were apart of the Confederacy in the first place. According to A Declaration of the Immediate Causes which Induce and Justify the Secession of the State of Mississippi from the Federal Union, ‘Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery — the greatest material interest of the world.’ These are not the words of some liberal revisionist trying to make Mississippi and the Confederacy out to be historical villains. These are the words from the state government of Mississippi. The adjective “thoroughly” makes it abundantly clear that the rationale behind Mississippi’s secession was slavery. I wonder why, when we currently ‘reflect on our nation’s past’ many people take an obdurate stance against this notion.” He has a great point.

Kevin Levin has already covered the proclamation.

What do you think?

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5 comments

  1. Shoshana Bee · · Reply

    Good evening, Al.The best thing I did for myself regarding the Civil War was create an electronic file of the Secession Documents. Its all there: Why the states seceded and what the Confederacy was built on: Preservation of Slavery. It’s in their own words. In essence, Confederate Heritage is a celebration of slavery. A giant step backwards.

    1. You might find this site useful: http://civilwarcauses.org/

      1. Shoshana Bee · · Reply

        This is a fabulous site! Thank you; I have bookmarked it for further study. I really do like to keep my discussions/refutations academic with the use of primary source whenever possible. It would be refreshing if the “other side” of the equation did the same.

        1. They can’t, because primary sources prove them wrong. They have to carefully cut and trim the sources out of context in order to make it appear as though they support their claims.

          1. Al wrote:

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            They have to carefully cut and trim the sources out of context in order to make it appear as though they support their claims.

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            Which is why that sort of nonsense thrives on social media like Facebook, which lends itself perfectly to misleading quotes and truthy slogans.

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