Dr. Paul Gottfried’s speech at the annual Confederate Flag Day commemoration in the historic 1840 North Carolina State Capitol House of Representatives chamber on March 3, 2007 is remarkably prescient and topical for us today.

Much history has passed in the last fourteen years, much of it very damaging and destructive of those Southern and Confederate traditions and inheritance we once cherished and considered normative and part of our lives as Southern folk. We have witnessed in recent years the virtual stripping away of our heritage handed down to us faithfully by our fathers and their fathers, the banning of our revered flags and symbols, the vicious destruction of our monuments, the expulsion of our literature and the rewriting of our history, and the attempt to extinguish our very memory, both publicly and privately in our schools and in the environment in which we live.

It is no exaggeration to say that these efforts by crazed fanatics, enabled and often supported by weak-willed and, even more, weak-minded “conservatives” and many Republicans is a form of cultural genocide. No, not in the literal sense where physical violence is used (although increasingly violence—unrestrained and mostly unpunished by the authorities—is employed). But in a progressive sense, using largely our educational system, our schools and colleges, our entertainment industry, and the media. Mostly we have sat by while this has happened, this gradual infection with a fatal venom which will, if not thwarted, finally destroy its intended target.

How many of us have children or grandchildren…how many of us know friends with children or grandchildren…where those offspring, our progeny, thanks to the imposed environment around us, have no true knowledge of their heritage, or consider it “racist” and bigoted. When history is even taught these days, or viewed on the television screen, the message drilled into them and us is that we must disavow our past. Such noble heroes as Lee, Jackson and Jefferson Davis, once revered by every school boy, not just in the South but throughout the nation, are now labeled “racists” and evil champions of slavery and white supremacy. Their monuments come down in many cases in the most ignominious manner. In Congress the so-called “conservative” political party, the GOP, joins with the rabidly radical Democrats to vote overwhelmingly to re-name all the US Army military forts named for Confederate generals; the memory of those once highly-respected and honorable soldiers is now consigned to the dust bin of history.

And across the South prominent Republicans—think here, for example, of South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley and Senator Lindsey Graham—call for and get the take-down of Confederate symbols. These are our defenders?  Give me a break. They are, rather, cowardly enablers.

This rot…this fatal infection…did not happen all it once. No, it was not just Dylann Roof’s senseless and criminal act back in 2015, it was not the mass media effort to turn the Charlottesville incident into “racist violence,” nor was it the media-driven attempt to convert the death of convicted felon and drug abuser George Floyd into some sort of modern saint. Of course, they served as opportunities for the lunatic post-Marxists to tighten the screws and control they have over our defecated society. But the contagion must be traced back to our own ignorance and our own incapacity or unwillingness to see and understand what was happening more than fifty years ago.

When I was in graduate school at the University of Virginia in the early 1970s, I met and knew other grad students there who carried with them the kernel of revolution and anti-Southern hatred. At first it seemed just an academic affair we would debate in some of our graduate courses. Indeed, their views would be considered fairly conservative today.

But many of my former classmates became professors and teachers, some at prestigious universities, and they carried with them that bacillus which continues to metastasize and expand its tentacles. And now their students also teach a new generation, a generation almost completely unhinged and “woke,” of deranged post-Marxists whose fanaticism knows no limits, whose hatred knows no boundaries.

Not to mention Hollywood and the anti-Confederate control of the “conservative movement,” as exemplified by the staunch anti-Confederate animus consistently displayed at Fox News. (Was anyone able to watch Bret Baier’s recent puff piece on President Ulysses Grant? He was, according to Baier, our nation’s greatest
“civil rights” president who stared down those evil Southern racists and, of course, a Republican whom we all should admire.)

Noted author Dr. Anthony Esolen, in a feature article in the November issue of Chronicles magazine [“Hope for America”], distinguishes between hope and optimism, and rightly writes that he is not optimistic for the future of the country, but he continues to have the God-given Virtue of Hope…and that, in the end, will trump all else.

Likewise, as we view our situation and circumstances in the historic South, it is very difficult to be optimistic. Yet, Hope is something else, something vouchsafed to us by our Creator, something that no one can take from us. Only we can despoil or renounce it.

Reading again Dr. Gottfried’s clarion call, his vision, let us then recall our solemn obligations and our duty. Let us recall the words of President Davis in 1873 that “truth crushed to earth is truth still and like a seed will rise again.”  But only if we do our part, only if we assume our solemn duty and obligations, in whatever station of life in which we find ourselves.

Boyd Cathey

Boyd D. Cathey holds a doctorate in European history from the Catholic University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain, where he was a Richard Weaver Fellow, and an MA in intellectual history from the University of Virginia (as a Jefferson Fellow). He was assistant to conservative author and philosopher the late Russell Kirk. In more recent years he served as State Registrar of the North Carolina Division of Archives and History. He has published in French, Spanish, and English, on historical subjects as well as classical music and opera. He is active in the Sons of Confederate Veterans and various historical, archival, and genealogical organizations.


  • William Quinton Platt III says:

    The Confederate States of America. A Christian nation. Declared in its Constitution. Your enemies care not for presenting history accurately. They are the godless. Negotiate? Waste of time.

    • Vivian Leese says:

      Thank you, Mr. Platt, III. I cannot imagine what we can do about our situation, as described so eloquently in Mr. Cathy’s article. It has always been my view that we Conservative Republicans are mostly, the quiet types, with our thoughts and beliefs tucked nicely beneath our vests. However, we cannot afford, today, to carry on this way. We must DO something, but I am not the person to decide our action. We need a great leader.
      President Trump?

      • William Quinton Platt III says:

        Ma’am, republicans have sold you out as well. At least half the republicans and for most of our lives, the republicans IN CHARGE of the party were complicit in the destruction of the middle class, the family, the church, the schools. The only difference I see between the parties is the republicans currently do not believe in killing children in the womb. The republicans have caved on just about every other position. Abortions can be accomplished chemically now, so republicans only defend life in abortion clinics which is at least not abandoning these children to the butcher. I wish it were not so…WE ALL WISH FOR A CAVALRY COMING OVER THE HILL.

        God can act through ANY man. Even Donald Trump. Even the Pope. Even Einstein.

        You certainly are the person to decide. If you are a person of strong moral conviction…if you believe you should love God with all your abilities and love your neighbor as you love yourself.

        I do know good ALWAYS defeats evil. Good has no use for evil…good can exist without evil. Evil cannot exist without good. Evil is illogical and unstable though evil unfortunately doesn’t seem to be able to understand its inherent flaw. God structured the universe this way, to resist these laws is to choose to be greater than God. God said in his first commandment to humanity, GO FORTH AND MULTIPLY. Every fiber of evil resists this commandment. Evil courts death…its own death…just as democrats court abortion and lament their collapsing universe…blinded by their own arrogance they support insanity and chaos and wonder why anyone would choose to bring a child into a world so twisted. We bring children into the world to make the world a better place. Democrats make that job so much easier than it has to be. Ironic…a democrat making a task easier for a believer…unfortunately believer does not necessarily equate to republican.

        “God doesn’t play dice with the universe”…Einstein said it once…or maybe it was some other pseudo-intellectual who imagined himself greater than God. I’m not bashing Albert, he changed his lie and his formulas to allow for an expanding universe…to allow for God…to acknowledge God in the creation of this “whatever” it is in which we currently reside. There are laws in this universe, they are easy to understand, they are able to be universalized and if you follow them, life continues.


        Einstein wasn’t the one to do it either, but he DID change when he saw himself in conflict with truth. His “cosmological constant’ was removed from his theories…he embraced order and structure and growth. I am no one of consequence which means I am as important as any human who has ever lived. I can change, just as Albert changed.

        WE all can change, for the better. We can encourage and support one another in this battle. God is not on our side, we are on His.


  • David LeBeau says:

    Great piece by Boyd Cathey. It’s up to us (Southerners) to teach our progeny the history of the South.

  • Julie Paine says:

    Yes, there is hope. I am not a Southerner, but thanks to the work of Abbeville and Brion McClanahan I am able to teach my children true history and as a result we are developing a love and appreciation for Southern history, tradition, and culture. You are reaching people. Many thanks from Idaho.

  • Peter cookson says:

    Great to see the ‘other side’s’ opinion. One more victory would have made the other side T13he ‘other side’.

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