Friday, June 9, 2017

POTD: No Glory

From 2016 10 09 Alexandria

Today's photo-of-the-day is from the streets of Alexandria, Virginia.

New Orleans recently removed four statues glorifying the Confederacy. Mayor Mitch Landrieu eloquently explained why:
It is self-evident that these men did not fight for the United States of America, They fought against it. They may have been warriors, but in this cause they were not patriots.

These statues are not just stone and metal. They are not just innocent remembrances of a benign history. These monuments purposefully celebrate a fictional, sanitized Confederacy; ignoring the death, ignoring the enslavement, and the terror that it actually stood for.
The Confederacy was on the wrong side of history and humanity. It sought to tear apart our nation and subjugate our fellow Americans to slavery. This is the history we should never forget and one that we should never again put on a pedestal to be revered.
Source: The Pulse.
Today's photo-of-the-day is also a monument from the aftermath of that war, not erected in New Orleans, but in Alexandria, Virginia. An unarmed, non-uniformed man stands, hat removed and head bowed. Its inscription: "Erected to the memory of the Confederate dead of Alexandria, Va. by their surviving comrades. May 24th, 1889." No guns. No flags. No glory. Only sorrow for the loss of life. Even life wasted in support of what we now recognize is a horrible cause.

Last year, the Alexandria city council voted to remove the statue to a nearby local history museum. That would be fitting. Still, that requires approval of the state legislature. (You see, Texas isn't the only place where the state legislature asserts control over purely local matters, despite hypocritical pretenses otherwise.) In the meantime, the statue stands. So be it. If there's a kind of monument that we can tolerate remaining standing, this is possibly it.

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