Southern Girl, Liberal Heart

Donnie in the Room

I wish I was half this clever, I love this effort and you should follow “The Weekly Sift”. Please enjoy!

The Weekly Sift

(with apologies to Ernest Lawrence Thayer)

The outlook wasn’t brilliant for Republicans that day.
They’d promised for six years that they’d repeal the ACA.
But when the caucus gathered, and they looked from man to man
They knew that not a one of them had ever had a plan.

“I’d counted on a veto,” said a rep from Tennessee.
“The blame Obama always took would fall on Hillary.
Then Pennsylvania went for Trump, and Michigan the same.
And now we run the government, we can’t just play a game.”

A colleague from Wyoming was equally concerned.
Shaking his head sadly, he stated what he’d learned.
“My hopes from the beginning always had one little flaw.
I’d pictured making speeches, never thought I’d write a law.”

Neither had the others, though they often said they would.
They knew what programs shouldn’t do, but not the things they should.
Then said…

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Another Good Read!

This is turning into an embarrassment of riches kind of day.  FINALLY someone who understands free speech does not mean quietly respecting hate and racism.  This is so well done I wanted to stand and applaud a blog post!

The Tattooed Professor

Another excellent commentary on how history and current events collide.  Please read.

Source: A Response to Shaun King’s Essay about Presidents Who Owned Slaves

One of the real pleasures and treasure of Facebook is when you find something you did not even know you were looking for!

As someone who left my church of too many Trump supporters and defenders after the election of 2016, I have been spiritually unconnected in ways I have been trying to fix.  I have some progressive Christian sites, some religious friends and many secular sites and information sources, as well as regular liberal friends and family so I am not alone.  Trump even managed to turn my apolitical husband into a politically motivated man!

Because of my loss, I very much appreciate it when I find a light in the darkness I feel or a voice that calls to me “come home”!  I found just such a voice today when a Facebook friend shared one of his commentaries and it has renewed my soul.

Faith is a special thing and it has to be nourished and nurtured not beaten and forced.  It is important that those who seek to enlighten know how to do it.  You cannot bring people to God by making God seem mean and low.

Give a read to Pastor John Pavlovitz and see if you find some balm too.

Learn Things!

As a young mother, I was bent on doing my part to change the world my children would inherit. I went to PTA Meetings, School Board Meetings, Board of Supervisors Meetings, and Democratic Committee Meetings like a fiend, never afraid to use my 3 minutes to speak, writing letters and commentary in the local papers, even started the liberal side column still seen in the Bedford Bulletin paper now written by Rick Howell. I am working class and have worked in the construction industry for over 20 years. So if there is ANYTHING I know, it is what the people I live and work with think and feel.

I was among those that helped get Bedford County elected school boards, helped Tom Perriello get elected to the very conservative 5th District. Elected Doug Wilder, Chuck Robb, supported Mary Sue Terry as our first female governor, and Clinton-Gore, which laid the ground work for Tim Kaine, Mark Warner, Terry McAuliffe and yes, Barack Obama.
So for those who want to tell me that I do not know enough about how this party should go or what we need to do to win elections that we have been losing so badly for the past decade, I tell you to kiss my ass and move on.

For those still with me, please read this thoughtful and IMO spot on analysis of what we, as a party need to come to grips with before we can move forward and be successful. We won for good reasons and now we have lost, and God help us, lost big, for real reasons too! We can change, or we can die.


So well done and well worth the time to read! Elizabeth Catte is a firebrand!

elizabeth catte

Over at the New Republic, Sarah Jones has a blistering take on J.D. Vance’s Hillbilly Elegy, the social analysis of Appalachia’s “forgotten” white working class masquerading as a regional memoir and current favored text for understanding the inner lives of economically precarious white voters. Her piece works better than most because it attends not only to the central themes and lessons of Elegy, but also to the media oversaturation of Vance as a white working class whisperer and his eagerness to embrace the role of political analyst during and after the election.

From local papers to the national press, from Fox News to NPR, from the lecterns of state schools and business schools, Vance has served up “straight talk” about the white working class that both conservatives and liberals are eager to consume. For conservatives, Vance’s rags-to-riches story – from his broken childhood in rural Ohio…

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Richmond still clings

Since there are many hundreds of books about the Confederacy (and many about Lee himself), many movies, much historical documentation and still entire college classes devoted to the study of our Civil War, it is beyond ridiculous to claim anyone is promulgating that Lee “is a man best forgotten”!

Yes, Lee “was a complex man, worthy of study, remembrance and, for some things, respect” which is all borne out in the many books about him and his life as well as the documented writings and stories about him, so it is ludicrous to claim people see him as “one-dimensional”. Lee was and remains “a major historical figure” even to those who oppose publicly celebrating the Confederate iconography and neo-confederacy cult of ‘the Lost Cause’.

What many fail to grasp is that no one needs you to bow down and acknowledge that slavery was an abomination. What people of good conscience and integrity want is for Southerners who “worship” Lee and the Confederacy to stop sounding like racists and stop lying that there were so many “other reasons” the Confederacy was formed, seceded and caused war in our nation. The atrocity of slavery is decided and cannot be changed, the excusing it, and claiming honor among those who practiced it or defended it to the point of war is the problem.

One may consider any “aspects of the war” you please but you need to concede that the South, the Confederacy, brought that “widespread death and destruction” on themselves! The North did not set out to make war on the South, the North did not fire on the Confederacy without cause, the North did not even set out to free the slaves or take anything from the South. The South spoiled for secession and war and when they lost they wanted to blame the North, blame Lincoln, blame anything and anyone except themselves, even God. That was the birth of the Lost Cause cult that still exists. The Civil War was not done to the South, it was done by the South.

The United States Constitution, once ratified was not just something any state could just walk away from, that federal property would just be ceded to you. That land claimed by the United States of America would be freely given up.

Oddly enough, much of history is just “a set of facts”, “static dates and events” and the reality as recorded by those who lived it. Interpretation does not allow for the embarrassing contortions of neo-confederates and Lee worshipers. That is why there is so much push-back.

Do you assume that Lee and other Confederates were the only people who might have felt for the South and their predicament? Do you suppose no other military leaders held an allegiance to both the South and the United States? You act as if Lee’s choice was the only one before him but that is just not true. Others faced the same decision and they chose to hold their nation together rather than fight to divide it and there is just as much, if not more honor, integrity and Christian duty in that decision but you neo-confederates never see that, much less concede it.

In the heat of conflict people may end up on the ‘wrong side of history’ and there is only so much fault that can be attributed in their time. But 150 years later, all but fools can see that the Confederacy was not “on the right side of history”!

This was not a “messy divorce” as there was no divorce. There was a ‘leaving and keeping all I have gained’ but that was never agreed to. The Confederacy did not wait to see if secession could have been negotiated. They felt they had ‘king cotton’ and superior might if not superior numbers and they wholly misunderestimated Lincoln’s resolve to hold the Union together.

Like any propaganda campaign, the neo-confederates try to muddy the water with “Northern aggression” while ignoring the same of the Confederacy. “Northern obstinacy” while ignoring the same of the Confederacy. Saying the North “simplifies the story and adds details that are construed as justification of wrongdoing” while ignoring the same from the Confederacy.

Even if you totally ignore the issue of slavery, whatever other state right you believe they wanted, whatever tariff you believe was wrong, whatever political minority they were becoming, whatever tax burden you think was too much, STILL cannot justify what the Confederacy did. Therein lies the crux of your problem and of Lee’s. That is why men like Lee are still relevant today. Why we study them, try to understand how honorable men could take up arms against a nation they swore to defend, turn against their fellow Americans. The issue of wanting to keep and expand slavery just makes the other issues worse.

You are correct that the personal “tension between freedom and control” still “plays out in the lives of all of us every day” but it is because of Lee, because of the Confederacy, that so many are ready to make war again in a second.

What you need to accept and admit is that if Lee had “consciously tried to do the right thing, not by the standards of our day, but in his own time and place” he still could have chosen to leave slavery. Many already had, even in the South. It was not a foreign concept, it was just one he would not accept, a fight he would not take on.

In today’s world, do good qualities cancel bad? Do good works cancel bad? Did they then? Confederates did not and do not think that of Grant, Lincoln or Sherman but they cling to it for Lee, Davis, and Jackson.

Lee is not going to ever just “fade away as a hypocrite and a loser” but he was both and why 150 years later is that such a problem to admit when it is so freely screamed about Lincoln?

History is indeed a harsh judge, but unless plied with propaganda like Confederate iconography, a fair one.

Lee_Park,_Charlottesville,_VAA serious student of Robert E. Lee and the Civil War, knows well why racists who aggressively “wrap themselves in the Confederate flag” are “all floating in one slimy cesspool”. Those who refuse to see the truth and the connections down through the decades are missing some very important lessons. It seems we are doomed to “still fighting the Civil War.”