AND HOW CLOSE IT CAME TO LANDING ON GOVERNMENT SOIL IN SOUTH CAROLINA …
|| By FITSNEWS || History moves fast … and judging by the contemporary debate over the Confederate flag, it’s also quickly forgotten.
Anyway, South Carolina lawmakers are on the verge of voting to remove this controversial banner from the north lawn of the S.C. State House – which we support and believe to be an appropriate response to last week’s horrific, racially motivated shooting at the Mother Emanuel AME Church in downtown Charleston, S.C.
There, nine black parishioners – including S.C. Senator Clementa Pinckney, the church’s pastor – were gunned down by Dylann Storm Roof, a 21-year-old white supremacist.
Five years ago, things were moving in the opposite direction …
Not only was there zero discussion about the flag (or the tens of millions of tax dollars being spent on a Confederate submarine), but flag supporters were pushing to have a new “Secession Monument” on the grounds of a government-subsidized naval museum in Mount Pleasant, S.C.
Specifically, the Sons of Confederate Veterans’ South Carolina division wanted to install the monument – an 11.5-foot monument at the center of a 40-foot-by-40-foot plaza modeled after the “Southern Cross” – at the Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum, which has received millions of dollars in taxpayer funding.
Patriots Point’s board – a government entity – deadlocked 3-3 on whether to permit the monument.
After that idea failed, North Charleston, S.C. mayor Keith Summey tried to bring the monument to his city (proposing to locate it in a government-run riverfront park) – but he ultimately withdrew his idea.
Like Summey, we don’t believe secession is a dirty word … in fact in light of recent federal overreach (which imposes on the liberties and pocketbooks of all citizens), we’ve gone so far as to entertain the notion ourselves.
Of course in so entertaining, we had this to say …
… as we’ve noted several times in the past, there is a racial stigma associated with the notion of secession, which is unfortunate but completely understandable when you consider what motivated South Carolina to secede from the Union way back in December 1860.
Ergo any plan (to secede from the Union) must be based on a declaration of universal human rights, something along the lines of a new government pledging to “make no law discriminating against citizens on the basis of gender, race, creed, color or sexual orientation.”
In other words, contemplating a future secession based on individual liberty is vastly different than embracing one based on liberty’s suppression.
And while this website maintained a longstanding indifference to the presence of the Confederate flag on government grounds, we consistently rebuked taxpayer expenditures on Confederate-related projects (most notably the H.L. Hunley submarine).
“The fact that one red cent of taxpayer money has gone toward funding any of this nonsense should make taxpayers’ blood boil,” we wrote two years ago.
In fact we hope the latest furor over the flag will put the kibosh on any further such spending. Furthermore, we hope lawmakers will eventually take the Confederate Relic Room – the government-run museum where they are talking about moving the flag – and turn it over to the appropriate private sector entity.
Museums – Confederate or otherwise – are simply not core functions of government.