I look at the destruction of confederate statutes as a case of progressivism vs traditionalism, the opposition between inherited identities vs chosen identities, the notion of being allowed to have an organic, communal historical identity vs the demand of liberalism that one choose ones identity as an individual by affirming or condemning allegiance to a historical narrative or moral ideology .
For the traditionalist one honors ones mother out of loyalty to her, regardless of her ideas or viewpoints, which may in fact be loathsome. Liberalism, essentially anti-family, diminishes all culture down to ideology that the individual is then free to merely condemn or affirm.
As Alain de Benoist writes,
“Modernity rests on a drastic reduction of the value of the past in the name of an optimistic vision of the future, which was seen as a radical rupture from what was before (ideology of progress). The prevailing model describes a man who has to be emancipated from his origins, not only because they dangerously limit his “freedom,” but also and more importantly because they are not considered as part of the self. This same individual, however, removed from the context of his origin is essentially similar to any other, which is one of the conditions of his insertion into a developing market.”
The connection to a group as inherited, not based on individualist choice, constitutes this traditional identity, which capitalism demands be destroyed, and for which liberal/enlightenment ideologies proffers the ready excuse, armed with bullying threats of “racism” and all the rhetorical violence of political correctness to aid in its creation of atomized a-historical little consumption units, demoralized and easily manipulated.
De Benoist again,
“Identity presupposes memory, which is as much an intellectual faculty as it is a collective exercise: it is not a coincidence if the theme of “duty of remembrance” accompanies the new rising identities. The man or the group who has lost his or its memory cannot apprehend identity in terms of continuity. Memory implies a look back in the past, which in return allows anticipation and a projection into the future. Nobody can survive if there is no clear consciousness that the present is an extension of the past.”
This should not be confused with nostalgia, a pining for the way things used to be.
Sam Francis once wrote,
“The end result of the attack on Confederate symbolism, in other words, is not merely the disappearance of the Confederate flag, “Dixie,” and other symbols and customs of interest mainly to Southerners and Civil War buffs but, in time, the eradication of all symbols from pre-1960s America that suggest a white-based or “Eurocentric” public identity.”
Indeed, schools named after Washington have had to be renamed, plans for the removal of memorials to Lincoln are underway, the American Flag itself, having flown over a slave owning nation, is being condemned.
As Nietzsche said, “The future belongs to those with the longest memory.”
Once historical monuments are gone, history becomes much easier to falsify, and weaponize, propagandize, and demonize. The Native Americans knew this - destroy a peoples memories and you destroy a people. So puzzling, this epidemic of White despair and suicide in the south - why so demoralized I wonder ? ...Isis is famously adept at this. Afghanistan used to be Buddhist after all, with marvelous statutes, now in the rubble heap. Old Lee joins them...
Well, I'm sure the great myth that these peoples grandparents had any qualities or heritage worth preserving, that they had any honor worthy of memory, or sacrifices or accomplishments had any meaning, will be razed to the ground with their monuments, and these people will forget any pride or esteem they thought they had, and will continue on burdened only with the memory of their ancestors mistakes.....They have been taught to hate themselves, their very existence an offense to decency, a war on any shred of dignity these poor people possess - and it is literally killing them. Ah, they deserve a good lynching no doubt....
Or, could it be this is not about slavery or the confederacy at all, but two competing visions of what a human being is - an individual vs a traditional identity ?