Ole Miss Not So Old
There is an op-ed in the New York Times welcoming the demise of the the long-time Ole Miss mascot.  I am sorry to see him go.  While some people may use old Confederate symbols to promote racism or violence, those symbols also represent what was an important part of American history.  A lot of good men fought and died for those symbols.  While there was racism, there was also a very genteel, graceful lifestyle in the Old South.  A lot of grace and charm is being lost along with the symbols.

Also we are losing the memory of the men who fought under the Confederate flag.  Many of them, probably the majority of them, did not own slaves.  I had several great-grandfathers who fought for the Confederacy, and as far as I know, none of them owned slaves.  The most illustrious of them, Col. James M. Williams, the subject of From That Terrible Field, had only moved to Alabama from Iowa a few years before the war started. 

There were philosophical choices besides slavery.  It was the fast-paced, matter-of-fact, industrial North, versus the slower, more polite, agrarian society of the South.  It was New York City and Chicago versus Charleston, Savannah, and New Orleans. The South preserved some of its old ways, but clearly they are dying out.  That's not all good. 

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