You know, I don't see how it can be well-meant. Maybe I'm underestimating how stupid people can be, which is shocking given my geographic circumstances, but I'm just not buying there's not a strong sense of knowing what they're doing there. I mean, come on. There's my argument. Come on.
Come on is sufficient...or it should be.Maybe me and the Boy should go on regular cemetery patrols. Take a rake and a weed-eater too.
Although I should point out that you can't imagine how tone deaf these people can be.If the culprit is who I suspect...he probably thinks it's a big giant favor he's done. A grand gesture of forgiveness. That's why I get so salty every time I think about it.
There aren't too many things more emotionally irritating than misplaced forgiveness.
Even cheap plastic flowers from Walmart can't make it better.
Hey E.F, I have been working up a storm, so not had time to comment, but I have enjoyed reading your special needs posts about the relationship between British/American music. This week at a British music awards ceremony there was actually an award given to an annoying British boy band for 'new global sucess'....aka America..my mind boggles about my country and its obsession with America.With a starbucks on every corner, and the whole where there is blame their is a claim I truly think we miss the point.This post... I imagine the outrage if well meaning morons put Third Reich flags on the graves of the British men who died in WW2....this is the same surely?
Hey Ms Sharron.We're gonna get back to that shortly. I'm trying to think of a good analogy...maybe planting the Union Jack on the graves of Scottish soldiers from the 16th century. I don't know.To many people, the Confederacy was no better than the 3rd Riech...at this point and probably for the foreseeable future. It wasn't always so. The history of the War has gone through cycles but, as we move further toward a national government, the fruition of lincoln's war, we get further from any reasonable understanding of the conflict.
The winners take all. Even our history. They get to write the official version.So it is that Scottish school children are not taught Scottish history - and 'Scottish Literature' is only recently entered the curriculum here (if you set to one side the often nauseating Burns' Poetry recitations for the 28th of January).Thing is - as Rabbie Burns says 'sic a parcel of rogues in a nation' - over the centuries there have been as many bampots and self-interested Anglo-Scots ready to sell-out this country and their fellow subjects as there were Angles ready to shoot and kill and rampage and wipe out a culture. Here I get scared by the Scottish Nationalists who want to treat Scotland as a martyred nation - as much as by the English/Unionists (not always the same thing) who want to put that nation to one side. Here, the 'truth' can be ugly and uncomfortable for either side. I feel repelled by the Union Jack. It is forever associated in my head with colonialism - imperialism - war and plunder. I can't stomach the UK national anthem with it's lovely verse about killing the Scots.Which would surely mean I was a dyed in the wool Scottish nationalist? But I feel repelled by the Saltire too. Suspicious of seperatism. Worried by a 'national pride' that so easily leads to racial hatred that talks about English folks living here as 'white settlers'...The 'official' depictions of the Confederacy will serve the winning power and will exist to reinforce the winners' values.I hope that there will be a 'reasonable understanding of the conflict'. But, like you, I doubt there will ever be.Just a thought - you could write it?
It's been written...and continues to be but, I think we're passed the point of that now...except among ourselves. That's where the convincing needs to be done.Aberdeen's an old place which obviously has some tie to Scotland...there are some old headstones in the cemetery for people that were born there. Some of the them more monument than tombstone.
Your suggestion, e.f., that it’s thoughtlessness more than deliberate provocation at work here, sounds right. In the pictures you’ve published, there isn’t a hint of the sort of vandalism you’d expect if people were trying to be deliberately offensive – as it is, the natural human desire to express sympathy for dead young men has probably led to their brains being disengaged. Could the fact that an alarm bell doesn’t automatically sound inside their heads as they’re committing an act of gross insensitivity have anything to do with the American mainstream media’s treatment (or lack of it) of the South’s attitude to the War Between the States? (I have no idea – just asking.) Anyhow, the battle sites and graveyards are pretty overwhelming, even for a foreigner: I first encountered them on a trip organised by my school 43 years ago (we were studying the war and its aftermath at the time). The effect might have been heightened for us by the fact that so many of the names we saw in the graveyards and on the monuments could have been the ones we answered to in class every morning, and because so many of the dead were our age or even younger. (It’s all come back to me recently because I’m currently working my way through the Ken Burns TV series.) I’m guessing that a generation reared on “Gone With the Wind” – which has always struck me as sympathetic to the South, especially in not shying away from the behaviour of carpetbaggers - might not have been prone to the same mistake. I’ve seen an awful lot of films set during with the War itself, but have there been any good ones dealing specifically with the Reconstruction era, and, if so, would you recommend them? I’d be really fascinated to hear your opinion on films about the War (you may have written about this, but, if so, I can’t find it.)
Gone With the Wind was written by a Southern Lady of course. The film was produced during a time when Southerners were needed. Wars will do that. In fact, it was the Spanish-American War (of Liberation didn't you know?) and, not only the need for troops but, the need to ship Federal soldiers through The South that started the first round of reconciliation.To tell you the truth though....I have wrung my brain completely dry today working on something else. Your question deserves more attention than I can give it tonight.Real quick though...Burns is viewed as a court historian in these parts. Outlaw Josie Wales and Birth of a Nation are the only two Reconstruction films I can think of off the top of my head. A couple of movies about the war...The first half of Ride with the Devil is great but, the best film I've seen is probably Pharoah's Army.The names...there's a reason that Winston Churchill described the Confederacy's defense of it's home as one the greatest feats in the history of Anglo-Saxon arms (should have been Anglo-Gallic...I had grands in both theaters and they all left under Irish commanders. I've told the story about General Taylor here before...says it all.I'll get a post together for you...get you off that damn ken burns. :)
Thanks, e.f. - Ride With the Devil and Pharaoh's Army passed me by, but I will hunt them down. Birth of a Nation was shown at our school when I was about ten - I don't expect that happens a lot these days. And I'd forgotten about Josie Wales - good movie. Fascinating stuff about federal troop and the Spanish-American war.I'm too far into the Ken Burns series to stop now - but I'm taking parts of it with a pinch of salt. For instance, I'd have expected to hear a lot more about the issue of state's rights, which is dismissed as a mere fig-leaf: I felt short-changed. Pop trivia corner: "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down" was written by Robbie Robertson who was half-Mohawk Indian and half Canadian Jew, and was recorded in the rented home of the world's most famous black American Jew - Sammy Davis Jr - and the cover version by America's most rabidly liberal songstress, Joan Baez, gave her her biggest-ever hit. (She screwed up some of the words - for some odd reason, "Stoneman's cavalry" became "so much cavalry" and "Robert E. Lee" became "the Robert E. Lee" - but you can't have everything). Anyway, thanks for responding on a busy day - appreciated.
I have said this before mate, if your willing to give your life for what you believe and you loose that life under that flag, hen dog dammit you should be remembered by that flag.FFS how do people live with themselves desecrating the graves of fallen soldiers. I hope if there is a heaven that those boys are standing in line, guns cocked for the morons what is it with people who do such stupid, thoughtless and distressing things. ugg
While I see it as a desecration :)...whoever did it, wasn't trying to be offensive. I don't think anyway. Just mind-numbingly thoughtless.In the early 90s, I went to Gettysburg and someone had sprayed the Mississippi monument with green, black and red paint (early 90's African nationalism stuff). The disturbing thing was that it wasn't fresh...the park hadn't done anything about it.That was Barksdale's outfit...he was killed there. Leading his men from the front.