BALTIMORE DEDICATES PARK LAND TO HARRIET TUBMAN
March 15, 2018Share:
AN IDLE CONVERSATION - Some time ago I ran into a guy I worked with before I retired. As we were chatting he brought up that he didn’t like all this “noise” about removing the Confederate statues – they were a part of the history and those soldiers and leaders deserved to be honored with statues.
So I mentioned I’m retired? I no longer have to suffer such opinions silently (as my work had required of me). I pointed out that a lot of Americans are disturbed by these statues because of their connection to the enslavement, in many cases, with their ancestors.
In no time I’m being man-splained that the Civil War had NOTHING to do with slavery – it was all about “states’ rights”. I laughed, “That’s just revisionist history. That war was about nothing BUT slavery.” Naturally, he rejected that notion, so I asked, “Have you ever read the Articles of Secession?” I explained they are on line and we could read them right now. I told him to Google “Texas Declaration of Causes” and read for himself the reason the Texans of that day gave as to why they were seceding. That’s where the conversation was left.
CONGRATS TO BALTIMORE - I thought of this conversation this past Saturday when I read an article in the newspaper that the City of Baltimore, having removed several Confederate statues the previous March, had re-dedicated that section of the park to Harriet Tubman; escaped slave, Underground Railroad “conductor”, and courageous volunteer to the Union Army during the Civil War. She risked life and limb in working to defeat the Confederate forces, and later went on to advocating for women’s right to vote.
I also recalled that a few months back our local newspaper published a letter to the editor that called for just such a realignment of our historical honors; the removal of the Confederate statues and instead, honoring patriots such as Tubman or Sojourner Truth. And now that had come to pass, in at least one Baltimore park.
WHAT WAS THE PRINCIPLE THE SOUTH FOUGHT FOR? - Harriet Tubman was born into, what the February 2, 1861 Texas Declaration of Causes (in their Articles of Secession) called “…their beneficent and patriarchal system of African slavery… [one] of the plainest revelations of the Divine Law.” It goes on to say, “…that the servitude of the African race, as existing in these States, is mutually beneficial to both bond and free, and is…the revealed will of the Almighty Creator.” I know it is hard to read those words given our modern sensibilities, but I wanted to include them here just so we’d all know how pervasive that view was in those days.
NO MORE REVISIONIST HISTORY - We must never forget what that war was about. We must continue to keep the pressure on to honor the heroes of that time, and relegate those Confederates we choose to “remember” to museums and other out-of-the-way venues; not to honor them, but to simply “remember” our history.
Congratulations to the citizens of Baltimore. It is past time for all Americans to recognize the people that are deserving of the honor of statues in the park. Those people that fought on the right side of history.