The destruction of Confederate monuments and the slandering of all things Confederate is in vogue in contemporary mainline media, academia, and the political establishment. The destruction of Confederate monuments by radical mobs is similar to the radical Taliban’s destruction of Buddhist monuments and the Soviet Union’s denial of public expressions of native culture in the Baltic states—all are examples of cultural genocide.[1] Standard American history as written by the victors in the so-called “Civil War” supports and encourages Southern cultural genocide. As noted by Southern historian Grady McWhiney, “What passes as standard American history is really Yankee history written by New Englanders or their puppets to glorify Yankee heroes and ideals.” 

The current campaign to stigmatize Southern heritage as detestable has its genesis in the decades before the War for Southern Independence.  In 1787, Patrick Henry warned Virginia and the South about the danger of forming a union with the people of New England. Patrick Henry predicted that the North, being the numerical majority, would control the Federal Government and use the Federal Government to extract tribute (taxes in the form of tariffs) from the South. Patrick Henry was joined by other Southerners, such as George Mason and Rawlins Lowndes who warned of the danger of a union with the North.[2] From its very beginning, the United States has been a nation divided. The division was not one of slave states vs. non-slave states but a division between a commercial society vs. an agrarian society. As explained by Southern scholar Grady McWhiney, the war was a conflict of, “culture against culture.”[3] Southern scholar Francis B. Simkins observed that had slavery not existed the North would have “conjured” another moral rationale for invading the South.[4]

In 1828, Missouri Senator Thomas H. Benton declared that the Federal Government’s tariff policy was forcing Southerners to pay 75% of the Federal revenue used to support the government. He lamented, “This is the reason why wealth disappears from the South and rises up in the North. Federal legislation does all this.” [5] In an 1828 letter to Daniel Webster, Abbott Lawrence of Massachusetts advocated a proposed tariff bill because “This bill if adopted as amended will keep the South and West in debt to New England the next hundred years.”[6] As Patrick Henry had warned and Senator Benton noted, the agrarian South was being exploited by the commercial North—a Northern commercial and financial crony capitalist society that could not exist without the steady inflow of revenue gained from protective tariffs. Massachusetts historian Charles Bancroft admitted this harsh fact ten years after the North’s conquest of the South, “While so gigantic a war was an immense evil; to allow the right of peaceable secession would have been ruin to the enterprise and thrift of the industrious laborer, and keen-eyed businessman of the North. It would have been the greatest calamity of the age. War was less to be feared.”[7] Follow the money, and you will discover the real reason for war.

Post-war, the previously prosperous South became the North’s impoverished political and economic colony. This fact, repressed and hidden in standard American history, has been noted by numerous Southern scholars and writers. Paul K. Conkin noted that the post-war South was, “Impoverished, politically impotent, a dependent colony of the North,” Thomas D. Clark and Albert D. Kirwan noted that “outside capitalism” had colonized the South, while Andrew Nelson Lytle boldly declared, “If the South could be broken politically, it could be forced into a position of economic serfdom, depending on those who would control this strongly centralized government.” [8]In a 1938 Federal report on Southern poverty, the Federal Government acknowledged that the primary reason for Southern poverty was outside ownership and control of Southern resources.[9]What is the primary goal of all empires? To gain access to other peoples’ resources. [10]

Confederate President Jefferson Davis explained the motive for Northern invasion of the South, “The lust for empire impelled them [Northerners] to wage against their weaker neighbors [Southerners] a war of subjugation.”[11] Senator Joseph Lane of Oregon in 1861 warned Congress that the Federal Government was becoming an aggressive empire.[12] The London Telegraph in 1866 observed that while the United States “may remain a republic in name, but some eight million of the people [Southerners] are subjects not citizens.”[13] But of course the victor’s rationale for invading the Confederate States of America is carefully constructed and enforced to cover its crimes against a peaceful neighbor—crimes that resulted in the death of thousands of black and white Southern civilians.[14]

By 1861, the Southern people reached the same point their Colonial ancestors reached with Great Britain in 1776. By 1776, London was concerned with its own aggrandizement even though it harmed the people of the Colonies. By 1861, Washington, DC, demonstrated its willingness to exploit the people of the South to grow the North’s industrial, commercial, and financial empire. The vast benefits of the Union were flowing to the North but the cost of those benefits was being paid by the South. Just like the Thirteen Slaveholding Colonies in 1776, the South in 1861 declared its right to establish a government of its ownThis American right is declared in the Declaration of Independence and is based upon the American principle of the consent of the governed. As President Davis declared, “The object was to sustain a principle—the broad principle of constitutional liberty, the right of self-government.”[15]

To maintain the flow of Southern tariff (tribute)into the Federal Treasury and avoid war, Lincoln declared that he had no intention to interfere with slavery where it existed while the Federal Congress, no longer burdened with Southern representatives from the seceded states, passed and sent to the States the Corwin Amendment. If ratified, it would have been the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It declared that Congress had no authority to interfere with slavery. This proposed amendment would have been a great inducement for the seceded states to return to the Union if the South had been “fighting to protect its slaves.” Not a single seceded state accepted Lincoln’s and the Federal Congress’ offer of Federal protection of slavery. Why? Because the South was not fighting for slavery—the South was fighting for its independence, for freedom, for the right to live under a government based upon the free and unfettered consent of the governed.

Upwards of 80% of the men in the Confederate military were not slaveholders. It is a falsehood to claim that the men who wore the gray in the War for Southern Independence were fighting to preserve slavery. Yet, this false claim is made and enforced by America’s “thought police.” It is slanderous to imply that the civilian population of the South suffered four years of unrestricted (terror) warfare to maintain slavery for the benefit of a few rich slaveholders. If the total number of Southern deaths caused by Northern invasion of the Confederate States of America were normalized to the South’s 2010 population, the total number of deaths (black and white Southerners) would be approximately 3.5 million! This is a higher number of deaths than the 2.9 million Japan suffered during World War II.[16] Yet, Americans are instructed that Northern inflicted death in the South was worth it “because at least we got rid of slavery.” The sad fact is that the North’s aggressive war did not end slavery—chattel slavery merely morphed into debt peonage or sharecropping. Sharecropping bound 8.5 million homeless black and white Southerners for almost a century after the so-called “Civil War.”[17] Over 60% of sharecroppers were white Southerners. The Federal Government’s infliction of poverty upon the Southern people was advocated by U.S. President Andrew Johnson when he cruelly declared that Southerners were guilty of treason and, “traitors must be impoverished.”[18] All Southerners, black and white, were indeed punished with poverty.

A liberal critic of America’s jingoistic, world-wide military adventures described the achievements of “America’s statesmen” as springing “from boldness unburdened by excessive scruples.”[19] This absence of “scruples” was first demonstrated by Lincoln, the Republican Party, and their crony capitalist allies when they initiated their aggressive war to prevent Southern independence. This same absence of “scruples” is used today by those waging an active campaign of cultural genocide against the memory of a democratically elected, peaceful, sovereign nation—the Confederate States of America. 

Yes, there is a Northern view of the War for Southern Independence, but as in all conflicts, there are two sides to this story.  Anti-South bigots in the “educated class” are pushing the narrative that only one side of this historic struggle is worthy of being impartially studied. Demanding the purging of dissenting views of any subject is the surest way to tyranny and the death knell to the First Amendment’s guarantee of “free speech.” But as has been noted by liberal scholar and writer Noam Chomsky, “Rogue states…must rely on the willingness of the educated classes to produce accolades and to tolerate or deny terrible crimes.”[20]

[1] Cultural genocide is the destruction of essential foundations of the life of national, regional, or ethnic groups with the aim of annihilating the targeted group or the absorption of one culture by another. It typically occurs after a successful invasion and occupation of the targeted group.  See, Rummel, R. J., Death By Government (Transaction Publishers, New Brunswick NJ: 2008), 32-42.

[2]Kennedy & Kennedy, Yankee Empire: Aggressive Abroad and Despotic at Home (Shotwell, Publishing Co., Columbia, SC: 2018), 156-8.

[3] McWhiney, Grady, Cracker Culture: Celtic Ways in the Old South (The University of Alabama Press: 1988), xiv.

[4] Simkins, Francis B., A History of the South (Alfred A. Knopf, New York: 1959), 190.

[5] Kennedy & Kennedy, The South Was Right! (Pelican Publishing Co., Gretna, LA: 1994), 49.

[6]As cited by Sam H. Jones, Governor of Louisiana in speech to the Southern Farm Bureau Training School, Monroe, La., August 18, 1943; available at:  accessed 12/8/2018.

[7] Bancroft as cited in, Livingston, Donald, “Confederate Emancipation Without War” To Live and Die in Dixie, Powell, Frank, ed. (Sons of Confederate Veterans, Columbia, TN: 2014), 485.

[8] Lytle, Andrew Nelson, Bedford Forrest and His Critter Company (1931, J. S. Sanders & Co., Nashville, TN: 1992), 30.

[9]Report on Economic Conditions of the South,” available at:  accessed 12/8/2018.

[10] Kinzer, Stephen, Overthrow: America’s Century of Regime Change from Hawaii to Iraq (Times Books, Henry Holt Co., New York: 2006), 321.

[11] Davis, Jefferson, The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government Vol. 1, (1881, William Mayes Coats, Nashville, TN: circa 1980), 229.

[12] Senator Lane as cited in, Kennedy & Kennedy, Yankee Empire: Aggressive Abroad and Despotic at Home, 149.

[13] The London Telegraph November 9, 1866 as cited in the New York World November 24, 1866.

[14] See Cisco, Walter Brian, War Crimes Against Southern Civilians (Pelican Publishing Co., Gretna, LA: 2008).

[15] Davis, Jefferson, Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government, Vol. 1, 300.

[16] Kennedy & Kennedy, Yankee Empire: Aggressive Abroad and Despotic at Home, 319-20.

[17] Kennedy & Kennedy, Punished With Poverty, the Suffering South, 105-6.

[18] Fleming, Walter L, The Sequel of Appomattox (New York: Glasgow, Brook & Co., 1970), 73.

[19] Bacevich, Andrew J., The Limits of Power, (Metropolitan Books, Henry Holt & Co., New York: 2008), 22.

[20] Chomsky, Noam, Rogue States: The Rule of Force in World Affairs (Haymarket Books, Chicago, IL: 2015), 13.

James Ronald Kennedy

Ron and his twin brother Don are the authors of Punished by Poverty, The South Was Right!, Why Not Freedom!, Was Jefferson Davis Right?, and Nullify Tyranny; Ron is the author of Reclaiming Liberty, Nullification: Why and How, and Uncle Seth Fought the Yankees. Ron is past Commander of the Louisiana Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans and is a life member of the Louisiana Division and the National Sons of Confederate Veterans. Ron is a frequent speaker at SCV, Southern Heritage and other pro-Liberty groups. Ron received a Masters in Health Administration (MHA) from Tulane University in New Orleans, a Master of Jurisprudence in Healthcare Law (MJ) from Loyola University Chicago, a Bachelor’s degree from Northeast Louisiana University, a certificate in Paralegal Studies from Louisiana State University and holds numerous professional designations in healthcare and insurance Risk Management.

Leave a Reply