Friday, September 13, 2013


For the love of God, Southerners, enough already:
A Florida school opened in honour of a murderous Ku Klux Klan leader is refusing to change its name despite a high-profile campaign by the community.

Nathan Bedford Forrest High School was named after the first Grand Wizard of the KKK who as a Confederate General during the Civil War reportedly oversaw the systematic slaughter of some 200 black soldiers.

The school opened in 1959 with white students only and was given the name because white civic leaders wanted to protest a court decision calling for the integration of public schools.

Today, however, more than half of the students are African American.

A petition with around 75,000 signatures is now urging the Duval County School District (DCSD) to change the name to help heal racial division in the community....

But the DCSD says the process for changing the name ultimately rests with the school board so it doesn't matter how many people sign the petition....
This isn't the fitst time an effort to rename the school has been shot down. It last happened in 2008:
After hearing about three hours of public comments, Duval County School Board members voted 5-2 to the retain the name of Nathan Bedford Forrest High School. The board's two black members cast the only votes to change the name....

Many urged a name change, saying the Forrest name was an insult.

"Nathan Bedford Forrest was part of the Ku Klux Klan, no matter how you put it. Nathan Bedford Forrest needs to be changed," said Stanley Scott, who is black.

But several spoke favorably of the general, saying the perceptions that Forrest was an evil man who ordered the massacre of Union troops were incorrect.

June Cooper, who graduated from Forrest in 1970, said some people wanted to wipe out Southern history.

"He was a good man," said Cooper, who is White. "He was a military genius."
A name change was also rejected in 1999.

Wikipedia reports that the name of the school was suggested in 1959 by the Daughters of the Confederacy. The Washington Post notes that this isn't the only school named after Forrest -- there's also one in Chapel Hill, Tennessee, his birthplace.

Removing Forrest's name from something can be a real struggle. Earlier this year, the city of Memphis voted to rename three city parks -- Confederate Park, Jefferson Davis Park, and Nathan Bedford Forrest Park. The vote had to be consducted in haste, so the city wouldn't run afoul of legislation at the state level that would have protected the names:
The "Tennessee Heritage Protection Act of 2013" bill, already introduced in the state legislature, would prohibit name changes to any "statue, monument, memorial, nameplate, plaque, historic flag display,school, street, bridge,building, park preserve, or reserve which has been erected for, or named or dedicated in honor of, any historical military figure,historical military event, military organization, or military unit" on public property....
But the names were changed. In response, the Klan held a rally in Memphis, and the city now faces a lawsuit.

Um, folks? You lost. Get over it. You're Americans now.


M. Bouffant said...

I wish "You're Americans now" would sink into their little minds & stay in there.

Luigi said...

Sorry, Billy Bob June Cooper! Nathan Bedford Forrest was a common lowly terrorist who killed hundreds of Americans and was a black slaver of the cruelest kind. He ran his own slavery rings and delighted in selling negro flesh. He made tons of money on human bondage and when his illegal livelihood was threatened, he did what every yellow bellied varmint of his generation did - he killed good American soldiers. If you liked Bin Laden, you loved Bedford Forrest! Both worthless traitors!

Joseph Nobles said...

The Civil War will never be over until Atlanta raises a statue to honor Sherman.

Glennis said...

Oh ferfucks sake. Laws that prohibit other laws (or legislative body decisions) have got to be the stupidest new tactic introduced by the Loser Class right wing.

Anonymous said...

Then maybe that's what needs to be proposed. A bust of Sherman in the school, and change the Football Team to the Fighting 5th Calvary. Drown them in requests for new Union memorabili, and dare them to turn them down. Sherman as a military genius too, wasn't he?

Unknown said...

Today in Milwaukee Wisconsin, a bit north of the mason-dixon line by any reasonable measurement, I was stuck behind a red pickup truck (no, really) with two confederate flags on its windows. And I am sick and tired of trying to understand this. So I'll just ask: what are you showing support for? Seriously. What? If your answer is "southern culture" (and I'm leaving out ALL the jokes here...) then lets pull over and discuss Faulkner. Or Twain. Or music. Or SEC football even. But it's not "southern culture" is it? You think you are slyly showing your support for slavery. And a war that killed more Americans than any other. It's not sly. It IS pathetic. Pathetic. Losing doesn't prove something is wrong any more than might makes right. However the list of what made the confederacy wrong is long and bountiful enough that losing a war isn't needed as evidence. But if it helps......fine-"you" lost the war. The ideas you fought for were defeated. More than just getting over it, you need to stop. Stop showing your support for racist traitors. Just stop. Or lets pull over and discuss what you know about your "southern heritage" .

Victor said...

Crackers, no matter what state they're in, probably ain't into no book larnin'!

And the post Civil War music that came from the South has almost exclusively African American roots.

I'll give you SEC Football - THAT, they may know something about.

The mistake that was made, was that we should have, literally, decimated, the South.

Sherman should have been allowed to, first, hang every office - and then hold lotteries among the Secesh soldiers, and the 9 "winners" should have been forced to watch the loser be hanged.
And then, the body should have stayed there, until the rope or the corpse rotted, and fell to earth, where it would lie, unburied.

And the message should have been sent to the 9 "winners," that if they tried to bury that traitor, and/or, in the future, even thought a treasonous thought again, that that would be their fate, AND the fate of their families.
And that all that they possessed, would then be given to local black people.

Maybe then, they'd have gotten the message.

Instead, the South has spent the last 150 years trying to glorify its treasonous traitorous past.

And Hollywood helped, starting with "Birth of a Nation," and then following that with "Gone With the Wind."

And that HS should be forced to have its name changed to "Emmitt Till Memorial HS." Or, pick the name of one of the other countless black people lynched since the end of the Civil War - from which, it appears, few lessons were learned.

If the election of Barack Hussein Obama as President proved anything, it is that we as a nation, are nowhere close to being "post-racial."

Instead, too many people in this country are going 'postal' about 'race.'

Ten Bears said...

I'll bet that red pickup (how novel is that?) was a jacked-up de-engineered American made piece of shit with tires the size of Volkswagons and the hood icon a perfect rendition of the human female reproductive system (why yes, I coined that). Out here on The High Desert, where even the "liberals" are armed, we see a truck like that the chicks, the cowgirls, the buckarettes think "no dick"; the buckaroos don't even think about because we know: fucking pussies.

Remember in the sixties and seventies when we let our hair grow, when we "let our freak flag fly"? It's their freak flag.

No fear.

Examinator said...

Gentlemens and others,

I think yo'all are missin' the real issue.

It's about an identity, a sense of self. It's about defiance (rebel) against Someone ELSE telling them how they should think or feel. It's emotional not about specifics.

Ask a Mongolian who is their most admired person and they'll invariably refer to Temasin (Genghis Khan) A 13th century alcoholic megalomaniac butcher who made made multiple 100 foot high pyramids of sculls of men, women and children he ordered massacred as he wiped out whole cities. All this to loot and move on. But it was a time when a disparate bunch of nomads were important.

The Great Wall(s)of China, What we see today is actually the remains of actually 4 or 5 built centuries apart , speak to Chinese of the greatness of dominant culture(s)... what they don't tell you is that for ever meter of wall there were 3 lives lost building them. Or that they were all failures as defences.

The Israeli tank battalion that have adopted a rewritten history of Massada as their rallying myth.

Australia and their thrashing at Gallipoli as their 'ANZAC Day' day of national veterans day.

How many movies have been made where America re fights and selectively wins Korea or Vietnam? (neither America won). or that the founding fathers were well, racists. Thomas Jefferson clearly stated that 'negros' needed a separate government and didn't even consider the native Americans.

If one looks at how the Civil war affected the poor whites, e.g. carpet baggers, lack of cheap labor to run their small farms and then having to compete with the cheap black workers for lower paying jobs (too many worker not enough jobs). Rural based States that were wealthier became now basket cases. Not to mention the state system in the US was set up to maintain state independence/self sustainability based on agriculture. After the Civil war the money/ power moved to the Northern (Yankees) states.

And since then the agricultural states have continued to be marginalised financially. There was no Rebuilding (Marshall plan) for the south then or since as was put into play for Germany after WW2 or money spent like in Iraq/Afghanistan. The hostility and resentment was predictable and to a degree understandable. See Cuba, Latin America, the countries that made up Yugoslavia.
Do I agree with it's many symptoms ...No, no and no again.
But will the northern states make the sacrifices to create more equity ... not bloody likely. Too many entrenched capitalistic personal interests at stake.
e.g. Consider who is going to lose money if say 1/2 the military budget, personnel, effort were redirected into nation building/equity based activities in the south or other depressed areas?