Let me clarify that — there is a minority of (I’m guessing) older white people in SC who appear to romanticize the antebellum years and their kinfolk who chose to leave the United States in a treasonous move designed to preserve slavery and their right to own other people. I’m also guessing that everyone else these people know are disgusted and ashamed, especially their kids. From TPM:

South Carolinians literally had a ball last night celebrating the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War. The secession ball, organized by the Confederate Heritage Trust — and sponsored by the Sons of Confederate Veterans — reportedly featured a 45-minute theatrical play re-enacting the signing of the Ordinance of Secession, where South Carolina declared its intention to secede from the union.

According to the event’s website, the original Ordinance of Secession was actually on full display at the event, and the South Carolina Senate’s interim president Glenn McConnell — an avid Civil War re-enactor himself — was expected to attend. The event’s dress code called for modern black tie, period formal or pre-war militia, and tickets cost $100.

The gala’s website describes it as an “EVENT OF A LIFETIME”!!! (emphasis theirs). But South Carolina NAACP president Lonnie Randolph told The State he thinks the event is more about celebration than history, and he planned on boycotting the ball. About 120 protesters marched in opposition to the event.

“We are not opposed to observances,” he said. “We are opposed to disrespect. This is nothing more than a celebration of slavery.”

Thomas Hiter, of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, appeared on Hardball last night, along with Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson. Hiter defended the event, called the state’s secession an “act of immense political courage” and went so far as to claim the Civil War didn’t start over slavery.

But Robinson, of course, rejected Hiter’s premise. “If it had not been for slavery, there would not have been the Civil War,” he said. “There’s no other reading of history.”

Hiter continued to sidestep any questions regarding any potential celebration of slavery, but he was sure of one thing: “Had I found myself alive in those days, I think, I hope, to pray to God, I would have fought the way my ancestors did … for the South.

So this guy Hiter is saying literally that he would have fought against America in defense of people owning other people. Wanna bet this guy loves Glenn Beck and considers the Tea Party just nifty?  Seriously, I really must demand that folks in the media just start calling stuff racist when it’s racist. Just so we’re all really clear on what racism actually looks like. It’s not right that people can excuse their own racism on TV or in the paper by saying it’s not racist. It just ain’t right.

What would Haley Barbour say? Well, I’m waiting for him to say something but here’s what he said about Virginia leaving slavery out of its Recognition of Confederate History proclamation earlier this year:

Barbour Bob McDonald’s Recognition Of Confederate History That Lacked A Reference To Slavery “Doesn’t Amount To Diddly” And People Should Stop Making A Big Deal Of It. “Democrats appear to relish the contrast and are already seizing on the race issue. ‘Being someone who maintains that slavery was an ‘insignificant’ episode in history that didn’t ‘amount to diddly’ isn’t the type of profile I’d base a national campaign on,’ said Democratic National Committee spokesman Hari Sevugan, alluding to Barbour’s comments on CNN on Sunday about Virginia GOP Gov. Bob McDonnell’s controversial recognition of Confederate history. ‘But, hey, he can always fall back on the fact that he’s a former lobbyist.’ What Barbour actually said in the interview was that McDonnell’s resolution – which originally made no mention of slavery – was ‘not significant’ and that the flap amounted to ‘trying to make a big deal out of something doesn’t amount to diddly.’” [Politico, 4/16/10]

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