I'm not quite sure who determined that, in order to be a proper Conservative, one must also be an apologist for the Confederate States of America. Obviously, someone at Human Events magazine thinks so.
I recently received an email from Human Events offering to sent a copy of H.W. Crocker III's The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Civil War to me, free of charge, if I would subscribe to the magazine.
The email ad gives a list of 7 facts which "today's PC professors refuse to teach about the Civil War."
Being a descendant of more than one Confederate soldier, it's almost expected that I should take the bait.
Not so, I say.
Let's take a look at the list:
(1) Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee: Why they believed, and sincerely hoped, that slavery would fade away naturally.
Not being an historian or an ACWF (American Civil War fanatic) I cannot state for a fact that this accurately represents Lee and Davis' view. True or not, it's rather beside the point, I think. The truth is, slavery was a central part of the economy of the states that attempted to secede from the Union. Support for the Confederacy was de facto support for the institution of slavery.
(2) The widespread belief among leading Northern abolitionists that the Constitution was "a covenant with death and an agreement with hell".
This essay written by abolitionist and mentor to Frederick Douglass, William Lloyd Garrison would bear that out. But, can the original Constitution of the United States be rightly called a "sacred instrument" when the document was dripping with human blood by its failure to address the issue of slavery from the beginning?
(3) The Emancipation Proclamation: It didn't free a single slave — and caused draft riots in the North.
(4) How the Federals waged a war against Southern civilians — destroying their crops, their cities, and their homes.
Sadly, the Federals appear to have been engaged in "Total War", though some historians argue against that view.
(5) The real Robert E. Lee: He considered slavery a political and moral evil and opposed secession — and after the war, a New York newspaper thought he should run for president.
Lee may have "considered slavery a political and moral evil" but, it sounds a lot like a so-called Catholic politician being "personally against abortion, but pro-choice".
(6) Nathan Bedford Forrest: though allegedly a commander of the Ku Klux Klan, he wanted more free blacks — and Chinese — in the South.
Allegedly? Forrest was the first Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan. I can't address his motive for wanting "more free blacks — and Chinese — in the South".
(7) How both Grant and Lincoln thought the Mexican War was morally wrong, but had no qualms waging a far bloodier war to deny the South its independence.
It's become popular nowadays to view the Confederates as the ultimate supporters of subsidiarity. There may be some element of truth behind that. As a boy, Jefferson Davis studied at Saint Thomas School at the Saint Rose Dominican Priory in Washington County Kentucky for a few years. Unfortunately, slavery trumps whatever good there may have been in the "Lost Cause".