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McDonnell issues thorough apology for leaving slavery out of proclamation

Virginia Gov. Robert F. McDonnell (R) apologized late Wednesday for failing to include slavery in his proclamation declaring April as Confederate History Month. The full text of his statement follows:

Governor Bob McDonnell issued the following statement today regarding the proclamation of Confederate History Month in the Commonwealth

"The proclamation issued by this Office designating April as Confederate History Month contained a major omission. The failure to include any reference to slavery was a mistake, and for that I apologize to any fellow Virginian who has been offended or disappointed. The abomination of slavery divided our nation, deprived people of their God-given inalienable rights, and led to the Civil War. Slavery was an evil, vicious and inhumane practice which degraded human beings to property, and it has left a stain on the soul of this state and nation. In 2007, the Virginia General Assembly approved a formal statement of "profound regret" for the Commonwealth's history of slavery, which was the right thing to do.

When I signed the Proclamation designating February as Black History Month, and as I look out my window at the Virginia Civil Rights Memorial, I am reminded that, even 150 years later, Virginia's past is inextricably part of our present. The Confederate History Month proclamation issued was solely intended to promote the study of our history, encourage tourism in our state in advance of the 150th Anniversary of the beginning of the Civil War, and recognize Virginia's unique role in the story of America. The Virginia General Assembly unanimously approved the establishment of a Sesquicentennial American Civil War Commission to prepare for and commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the War, in order to promote history and create recognition programs and activities.

As Virginians we carry with us both the burdens and the blessings of our history. Virginia history undeniably includes the fact that we were the Capitol of the Confederacy, the site of more battlefields than any other state, and the home of the signing of the peace agreement at Appomattox.

Our history is perhaps best encapsulated in a fact I noted in my Inaugural Address in January: The state that served as the Capitol of the Confederacy was also the first in the nation to elect an African-American governor, my friend, L. Douglas Wilder. America's history has been written in Virginia.

We cannot avoid our past; instead we must demand that it be discussed with civility and responsibility. During the commemoration of the Civil War over the next four years, I intend to lead an effort to promote greater understanding and harmony in our state among our citizens."

In addition the Governor announced that the following language will be added to the Proclamation:

WHEREAS, it is important for all Virginians to understand that the institution of slavery led to this war and was an evil and inhumane practice that deprived people of their God-given inalienable rights and all Virginians are thankful for its permanent eradication from our borders, and the study of this time period should reflect upon and learn from this painful part of our history...
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By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  April 7, 2010; 6:01 PM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar , Robert F. McDonnell  
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Comments

I'm shocked! SHOCKED... that he finally figured out that slavery was wrong even though, yesterday, it wasn't even worth mentioning.

Times really do change...in 24 hours.

Posted by: p_chuck | April 7, 2010 6:21 PM | Report abuse

You've got to be kidding me! Oh, yeah, we also kept a few people around to use like beasts of burden but it was such a small thing it just slipped my mind. I'm sure y'all can believe that! I think I'm gonna be sick!

Posted by: beaone | April 7, 2010 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Oh yeah! That's right, that slavery thing! Now I remember! That did have something to do with the "Southern Way of Life" I was celebrating. Oh, gosh! What was I thinking, right, actually owning another human being is, of course a bad thing, of course it is. Selling off children, splitting up families, yeah, that's not a good thing either. So, yes, I guess that when I want the whole State of Virginia to celebrate that "Southern Lifestyle", I didn't mean celebrating the actual owning of black people, just the good times we had when we did own them and they did all the work and took of our kids and .....

What an embarrassment to the State of Virginia.

Posted by: thebobbob | April 7, 2010 6:30 PM | Report abuse

It was a huge mistake to leave that out of the proclamation. The governor is right to correct himself - and should do what he can going forward to continue progress in race relations in our state.

Posted by: chrojo01 | April 7, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Confederate Month

For all the young people in this chat, here is a taste of Jim Crow, your grand fathers called the good old days. If the Tea-bagger has this much influence on the Republican Party, where does Michael Steele fit in, was he consulted about this special confederate month. Or is he a front man for the GOP, that squanders hard earn donated dollars on plush bondage night clubs.

For all the young people in Virginia that did not think it was not important to go to the polls. You must tear yourself away from your m-3 players and vote. To their credit, the Tea-baggers, out the vote, and now enjoy you confederate month.

For all the young people IT IS your time to say, NEVER AGAIN

Posted by: nateminor | April 7, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Now its time for you to apology to
gays and Lesbians. Oh, that's right those folks are sub human because they choose to be what they are. Amazing that a Governor in the twenty first century could be so ignorant of Genetics. Who said that prejudice was dead. Even more amazing is the fact that black folks help defeat Gay marriage in California.

Posted by: jimnbo | April 7, 2010 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Slavery was also practiced up north, in NY State. We visited a mansion, now museum in the area of Gilboa which gave tours of the house. The tour guide informed of us of the family,etc. and then she mentioned and/or pointed at some room where the slaves were slept. I was very surprised to hear that, and this was after the civil war, around 1880's. I can't recall the exact date now but I was shocked that so long after the slaves were freed, they were not actually free.

Posted by: maryfh007 | April 7, 2010 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Gov. McDonnell Apologized, he should have got on his knees, the dip-stick

Does Gov. McDonnell truly think that Black History month was a slap in the face to white confederates that participated in our nation’s civil war over 145 years ago?

Does the Governor believes that by promoting confederate history month will rekindle great proud of the great grand sons of the confederate?

Is it fair to say that the confederate insist on owning and selling of slaves, torture, raping, lynching in the Southern states below the Mason Dixie Line and new territories Westward? What is he getting out of this confederate history month, campaign donations and Tea-baggers votes in 2012?

For those young people of Virginia that have moved pass bigotry and prejudice, know this that we feel your pain and we hear cry of hollow bitterness that grip the tongue and nulls your heart. Just remember what Senator Edward Kennedy, love to say, “the dream lives on and the hope will never die”.

Posted by: nateminor | April 7, 2010 6:40 PM | Report abuse

If there is one thing more outrageously ignorant than governor McDonnell, it is the mindless mass of Virginia voters who ushered his regime into office.

Posted by: mintkeith | April 7, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

>>>>Slavery was also practiced up north, in NY State.<<<<

There is no Confederate History Month in New York, though. That's the problem. Not acknowledging the evils of slavery was just he icing on the vile cake.

The Confederacy should not be honored under any circumstance.

Posted by: p_chuck | April 7, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

First I was reading a story about a giant lizard, and then I read this one - I think they're about the same thing. What an opportunist twit.

Posted by: jadams3 | April 7, 2010 6:47 PM | Report abuse

Instead of apologizing for leaving a MAJOR portion/timeline/causation of the Civil War as part of the proclimation, this lowlife had an opportunity to rescend this insane idea of "Confederate History Month"
Slavery was a form of GENOCIDE of a particular races, and Gov. McDonnell wants to Celebrate this era?

Virginians, your going to lose what progress was made since the ending of the Civil War era. All because ONE POLITICIAN decides to become a historian while leaving a major portion of HISTORY out of the proclamation itself?

Slavery was a form of GENOCIDE of a particular races, and Gov. McDonnell wants to Celebrate this era?

Unbelievable

Posted by: TwoSons | April 7, 2010 6:47 PM | Report abuse

The State of Virginia must be mortified for electing such an idiot.

Posted by: jc4342 | April 7, 2010 6:47 PM | Report abuse

He had a flash of the obvious and made the political calculation that he should make this little addendum. From the heart? - not a chance.

Posted by: copperwire9 | April 7, 2010 6:52 PM | Report abuse

McDonnell:
"We cannot avoid our past; instead we must demand that it be discussed with civility and responsibility. During the commemoration of the Civil War over the next four years, I intend to lead an effort to promote greater understanding and harmony in our state among our citizens."
_____________________

He, himself, tried to avoid the past by leaving out mention of the slavery era within the proclamation.

The only effort he will be leading is the re-opening of the very old battle wounds of the south. FOR WHAT PURPOSE? Did the citizens of Virginia demand a history lesson that last a month focused on the Civil War and it's causation?

Posted by: TwoSons | April 7, 2010 6:54 PM | Report abuse

Will the Republican who hasn't said or done something stupid and offensive in the past, say, two or three weeks, please step forward...that's what I thought.

Posted by: johnharris1 | April 7, 2010 6:55 PM | Report abuse

Good for the Gov. to get a little extra credit on the repeat of his history test.
But this new comment about ". . .encourage tourism in our state in advance of the 150th Anniversary of the beginning of the Civil War. . ." remains a bit puzzling to me. I understand there is an armed demonstration planned at Fort Hunt National park later this month, protesting our government. Is this the kind of tourism Gov. McDonald is seeking to commemorate the civil war? And why the beginning of the war? Why not celebrate the anniversay of the end of civil war? Ot the re-unification of the nation? I'm just not quite seeing the "harmony". But he can lead away and see who, if anyone, follows.

Posted by: MIndfulPerson | April 7, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse

What a snow job! He doesn't believe a word of that statement. He got caught and now has to spin.

From the Richmond Times Dispatch when McDonnell announced his declaration:

Asked why his proclamation did not mention slavery, McDonnell said that in issuing the proclamation he was not focusing on that aspect of the state’s past.

http://www2.timesdispatch.com/rtd/news/national/national_govtpolitics/article/mcdonnell_recognizes_april_as_confederate_history_month/335408/

Posted by: FauxReal | April 7, 2010 7:01 PM | Report abuse

My great grandfather fought to preserve state's rights. He didn't give a dam about the darkies. My other great grandfather fought to preserve the Union. Most likely he felt the same way. There is nothing to apologize for. None of us were alive then and its' likely not too many people care now...

Posted by: notfastenough | April 7, 2010 7:05 PM | Report abuse

Perfect people with all the answers, no doubt slavery was more than wrong, but why is it not such a sin to have a month to recognize a particular race in our country of many races? Why no yelling and screaming about certain race related "United...College Funds". Slavery has been wrong in the thousands of years that it has existed, but so are other "things" that slide by without a whimper. Why is that?

Posted by: idiotthere | April 7, 2010 7:16 PM | Report abuse


The governor's statement was gracious and humble.

Posted by: DagnyT | April 7, 2010 7:20 PM | Report abuse

its safe to say "the slavery was wrong" part was implied.

of course, if the media applied this standard to obamma, he'd be issuing proclamations saying that anything that came out of rev. wright's mouth was wrong.

Posted by: dummypants | April 7, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

>>>its safe to say "the slavery was wrong" part was implied.<<<

It clearly wasn't.

Posted by: p_chuck | April 7, 2010 7:30 PM | Report abuse


Yeah: wouldn't it be nice if had it never happened, but of course we have a history at all because of the horror inflicted on those who did most of the back-breaking work, those amply rewarded by 250+ years of unspeakable abuse.

Gov. McDonnell's "oops" is unconscionable.

Posted by: drjillshackford1 | April 7, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

I suppose the slavery reference was left out as intended until someone called him out on it. Probably had to apologize lest he would appear to look like someone who simply forgot his hood while flying his confederate flag.

Posted by: BeaverCleavage | April 7, 2010 7:41 PM | Report abuse

Seems that since no one much knows our TRUE history since they have been indoctrinated in the US Federal schools, they do not realize that slavery was NOT a 'southern thing' as everyone has been forced to believe - it was the north Yankee nation that was the slavery and slave trade nation who forced the south to have slavery in the 1830's for their own northern financial benefit..The North nation had slavery for almost 200 years before they forced it on the south. And slavery had nothing to do with the Lincoln invading war on the south. The south had freed most of their slaves BEFORE Lincoln invaded and began his war on the south.
If any one should apologize for slavery it is the North. And only the US Federal flag flew over slavery and the slave trade and ships. The Confederacy FORBADE their Christian freedom flags fly over anything to do with slavery.

Posted by: carriet1 | April 7, 2010 7:43 PM | Report abuse

For those of you that wish to celebrate the "Joy of Confederacy" please explain the JOY. Me nor any of my family members will participate in any confederate month celebrations. I find nothing to celebrate.

Posted by: jwhite3272 | April 7, 2010 7:47 PM | Report abuse

And to think that I even spent five minutes considering moving to VA! Every Virginian should be thoroughly embarassed by the fact that your governor even spent two seconds thinking that Confederate History Month was a good idea. Traitor appeciation month?! My God!

Posted by: PepperDr | April 7, 2010 7:48 PM | Report abuse

"Thorough apology?" If he had left out this phrase it would be an apology: "to any Virginian who has been offended or disappointed." Apologies don't need to be thorough, they need to be heartfelt, and this was just another way of saying "I'll say whatever you want me to say, if you'll just shut up."

Posted by: TomR3 | April 7, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Very appropriate, thank goodness he corrected his painful omission. And yes - the gays and lesbians must not be forgotten, and the wimmin of course, and especially let's please not forget the indians, and the poor, by all means. Animals maybe? What about the fate of animals in ancient Athens, and Rome?
So let's do some history people - it's about time!

Maybe, as a matter of fact, let's talk about slavery; let's explain how all those slaves came to be at the coast, ready for transport.
Who took them there?

And let's investigate slavery from the beginning of time, about hte barbary pirates for instance, and let's remind everybody about the people who ended slavery, and also: let's make it known that there are still people being sold in Africa, and by whom..!

Posted by: Paardestaart | April 7, 2010 7:55 PM | Report abuse

Not a particularly astute political move initially for sure; but I'm not sure if the issue is his dunderheadedness or his cowardice upon learning some took offense -at least stand up for what you believe.

I just know that any minute from now, he'll tell us that "...I have black friends..." are the two little boys from World Savings listening?

Posted by: BigCat84 | April 7, 2010 7:56 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, Governor McConnell. More of us should try to share your courage and candor in admitting a mistake.
"Civil War History Month" should recognize the courage and ideals of the best people on both sides--soldier and civilian, slave and citizen, female and male. Our heritage includes much to celebrate, without blinding ourselves to the evils and mistakes of the past.
Let's go forward together.

Posted by: dricks | April 7, 2010 8:04 PM | Report abuse

"The south had freed most of their slaves before Lincoln invaded...". You said you were going to tell the truth; missed that one.

The truth of the matter is that Lincoln was on record for years, against slavery, prior to declaring war on the southern states that chose to leave the union. The TRUTH is that his invasion was first motivated by saving the union, the United States.

It was only later,as the war progressed, that he realized that he could put an end to such an ugly thing as slavery in the US.

I still await a answer to my question about why it is OK to honor certain groups and is racism if another does anything one group doesn't like. We are ONE country, made up of several different races.That adds to our strength. Is there any more "TRUE" history out there?

Posted by: idiotthere | April 7, 2010 8:06 PM | Report abuse


"God-given inalienable rights"?? God was used to justify slavery, remember???
The old testament is filled with slavery.

Posted by: rationalist2 | April 7, 2010 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Come on now. Take a close look at that text. He could have coached the speech-writer better. Does anybody really buy it? He left out 'slavery' because it never occurred to him.

Posted by: jhosford | April 7, 2010 8:19 PM | Report abuse

Think he got the message from the guy who said "kiss my black ash"

Posted by: racerdoc | April 7, 2010 8:20 PM | Report abuse

Our Governor refers to Virginia as the "home of the signing of the peace agreement at Appomattox." He should have reviewed his history books a little more carefully before he included that phrase. There was no "peace agreement" signed at Appomattox. Instead, there was an unconditional surrender of Lee's Army of Northern Virginia. I know those words are still hard to utter 150 years later, but it was Lee's surrender... not a "peace agreement."

Posted by: jwhitfield1 | April 7, 2010 8:22 PM | Report abuse

Confederate History Month? Is this some kind of late April Fool's joke?

Posted by: bordersbuff | April 7, 2010 8:24 PM | Report abuse

"slavery was not a southern thing," REALLY??? See this site http://www.usconstitution.net/consttop_slav.html from the US Constitution Online, topic slavery. Note that the census data is provided from a place founded by an old Virginian - UVA. Also note that it was northern owners who respected spirituality. If you have solid data, established references, something we can all review, which will show that the south was forced to abuse human beings and keep slaves, please provide it.

Posted by: Lilybelle3 | April 7, 2010 8:26 PM | Report abuse

Um, NO, Lincoln was NOT "on record for years, against slavery." During the Lincoln-Douglas debates he stated repeatedly that he didn't give a rat's ass about the slaves. His only concern was preserving the Union, and he intended to do that whether it freed all slaves, some slaves or no slaves. Don't believe me? Try reading some REAL history, instead of just a blog -- look it up!

Posted by: NewsJunkie11 | April 7, 2010 8:27 PM | Report abuse

How typical of a shamed Republican who:

1. Is sorry - for being caught, not for making this egregious omission.

2. Is only being himself, which makes it even worse.

2. Shares a party attitude that happens to be 150 years behind the times.

In order to be effective, this apology is incomplete without an admission that he made a mistake for a very good reason - that he has issues that he must resolve with himself as well as with his constituents - and that isn't done overnight.

The real treat here will be how the "faithful" party members will try and shrug this off and rationalize the offense and inadequate response - instead of trying to examine why this is still happening today and formulating a reasonable solution.

What did Michael Steele say about this? He should be good for a well thought-out gaffe here.

Posted by: WorldNet | April 7, 2010 8:30 PM | Report abuse

News flash: the Confederates were not the "bad guys". The vast majority of Confederate soldiers did not own slaves, and did not fight in the war to defend the practice of slavery. They were fighting for the same things Americans have always fought for.

People who equate the Confederacy with slavery are ignorant of an important part of the history of Virginia and the USA. Let's hope that the observance of "Confederate History Month" can help to educate those people.

Posted by: bblackmoor | April 7, 2010 8:31 PM | Report abuse

I do not think the Governor has forgotten to include slavery. It is a major topic in past history which sticks to the mind of any one talking past US history.
It is a deliberate act of ommission.

Posted by: hhyapster | April 7, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

My guess is that Virginia governor was more concerned with Civil War tourism dollars than the facts or pain of history. In that view, his mistake may have provided more free advertising copy for Virginia tourism.

Still history is often written in blood and gore and each new generation needs to see that the blessings of liberty are not free, did not always exist and can be wasted or lost.

So shoot him full of only verbal holes as you wish, for the shooting part of the civil war is over. Some of our extended families were split by this war and shot at each other. That there is a peace for the Civil War personally matters to our families. Winning the full peace, in ideals that honor the human rights of all persons, is the true American challenge.

For I do not know anyone who just cannot imagine that public office holders are free of foolishness. The real question is whether we can find or build a less foolish America.

Posted by: Arctific | April 7, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

UH, ONE, debate a career does not make. Read just a bit more and you'll find it.

It is indeed true, as I have stated, that Lincoln, especially at the beginning of the war was trying to save the union. At one point he is quoted as having said that he would not free a single slave if the union would come back together(paraphrased). That's called a bad reaction under stress that I don't think any of us can imagine.

If one is not REALLY for something, WHY would they do it? All right follow this--is FOR slavery and FREES the slaves--WRONG!

Posted by: idiotthere | April 7, 2010 8:40 PM | Report abuse

The man was playing to his natural base of white guys so cut him some slack. He's got his sheets and hoods all ready to remind the black people that the South will rise again. He is a total horse's behind.

Posted by: moninga1 | April 7, 2010 8:40 PM | Report abuse

Was slavery evil? Of course it was. It was also on the way out well before the Union and the Confederacy went to war. The Civil War was not fought over slavery: that was an excuse fed to people who did not know any better (and apparently still don't).

"Slavery" was the "weapon of mass destruction" of its era.

Posted by: bblackmoor | April 7, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

UH, ONE, debate a career does not make. Read just a bit more and you'll find it.

It is indeed true, as I have stated, that Lincoln, especially at the beginning of the war was trying to save the union. At one point he is quoted as having said that he would not free a single slave if the union would come back together(paraphrased). That's called a bad reaction under stress that I don't think any of us can imagine.

If one is not REALLY for something, WHY would they do it? All right follow this--is FOR slavery and FREES the slaves--WRONG!

Posted by: idiotthere | April 7, 2010 8:42 PM | Report abuse

Slavery is alive and well today in Haiti and many other places in the world. It is the human condition to suppress, control and manipulate. Virginia and the south lost 250,000+ souls to purge it's sins. Stop criticizing McDonnell for what has been, is, and will be again.

Posted by: StephenPowers | April 7, 2010 8:43 PM | Report abuse

The Civil War continues.

Posted by: larrypoke | April 7, 2010 8:45 PM | Report abuse

His decision to make a proclamation will cost him dearly when he runs for other offices. What a retard!

Posted by: drkly | April 7, 2010 8:46 PM | Report abuse

I haven't laughed this much since I don't know when. Can we spell HUBRIS? Do we know what it means? Clearly McDonnell does not. This bodes really well for the mid term elections. The republicans continue to implode. Have a conference call Faux news and see if 'yall' can get it together.

The South has returned to be a laughing stock.

Posted by: jjcmadison | April 7, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

This guy is a tremendous jack as s and the poster child for what is still wrong with America. A long-winded apology loaded with an unnecessary history lesson does not detract from the fact that his ignorance regarding slavery, and his bigger ignorance regarding the ill feelings that will come with a Confederate History Month, goes to show that this politician should have never won this office. He is a disgrace to the majority of Virginians and Americans who do not want to commemorate a bigoted shameful past.

Posted by: jharlin00 | April 7, 2010 8:51 PM | Report abuse

Northrop Grumman take note! Is this where you want to move your headquarters?

Posted by: jjcmadison | April 7, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

Seriously - It's obvious he declared April "Confederate History Month" as a counterpoint to "Black History Month." To disingenuously claim this was created to promote state tourism is to think we are fools. This Virginia voter is not.

Posted by: SurlyGirly | April 7, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

One debate a career does not make. I need not read any "real" history, I am fully aware of it. Now you just keep reading your Lincoln history and the truth will come to you, well,to most people.

Your argument defies reason! Perhaps you can "blog" your way out of this: why would a president that you have indicated was not against slavery, free the slaves.In your opinion one must believe that Lincoln is FOR slavery and therefore he FREED the slaves-HUH?

Posted by: idiotthere | April 7, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

*sigh*
People who believe the Civil War was fought over slavery are mostly clueless. That war was fought over state's rights. Slavery was but one of the issues at stake.
Allow me to point out that the war had raged for two years, before some genius realized that the Emancipation Proclamation might be used to weaken the South.
PLEASE don't take my post as a defense of slavery. As practiced in the US, slavery was an abomination. But, being politically correct comes at a cost. Rewriting history is a terrible cost.

Posted by: Nunyabiznezz | April 7, 2010 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Regarding McDonnell's proclamation remix, it is, to quote the old Johnny Mathis/Deniece Williams song, "Too much, too little, too late."

Posted by: WC-T | April 7, 2010 8:57 PM | Report abuse

What are you talking about, maryfh007? The 13th Amendment to the US Constitution eliminated slavery in the US - the WHOLE US. The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States was proposed by the Thirty-Eighth United States Congress, on January 31, 1865. The amendment was adopted on December 6, 1865, when Georgia ratified the amendment. In a proclamation of Secretary of State William Henry Seward, dated December 18, 1865, it was declared to have been ratified by the legislatures of twenty-seven of the then thirty-six states. There was no slavery in 1880 -- perhaps the house you visited housed slaves in its past, but not in 1880! Slavery was abolished in NY in 1827. See more at http://www.slaveryinnewyork.org/about_exhibit.htm

Posted by: dek10000 | April 7, 2010 8:59 PM | Report abuse

Republican never admit they ever did anything wrong. Republicans never admit defeat. Republicans concede nothing, not even long lost wars.

The confederacy lost; thank you God!

America is a much better place because of it.

You people defending this gross caricature of history should go sit in the corner with the rest of your pathetic fallacy of a constituency. Yall are sick people I tell you.

Posted by: ApostasyUSA | April 7, 2010 9:00 PM | Report abuse

I really hate to depart all of the history challenged people here, but I must. However,before I go, would someone tell me when this thing that the VA. governer did was started? Is he the first idiot to do such a thing? Or, do you know?

Posted by: idiotthere | April 7, 2010 9:00 PM | Report abuse

It is a standard political maneuver. He has a crowd of voters/donators who pretty much all white, listening to his proud-to-be-a-confederate speech. He needs to play to them. If he was seen as an apologist, he'd lose money and votes from many.

So... he probably already prepared an apology for not-mentioning slavery, then releases a well thought out document. Anyone who may actually have avoided giving him money if he HAD mentioned it, would probably simply think, "Gee, them black folks really got it in for him!", yet understand that their boy just has to play to the political forces and still donate. Those that didn't notice... don't care, and still donate. Those that may actually have a vested interest in race issues, but still vote republican.... they're still going to vote and donate.

So... he has placated the press while maintaining his revenue.

nice job. Why the big deal?

Posted by: coldfish | April 7, 2010 9:01 PM | Report abuse

It IS embarrassing to live in the state of Virginia. I thank GOD I was not born here, otherwise the stain on me would be permanent. I can move at any time (and will certainly retire somewhere else!).

Posted by: dek10000 | April 7, 2010 9:03 PM | Report abuse

weather its 1880 or now, the negro issue remains detrimental to america , first brought here for labor needs to pick cotton by plantation owners greedy for cheap profits, bringing blacks out of africa on ships here was wrong, trying then to bring them into a modern society as equals from a primitive existance was nothing less than inhuman and cruel, but ledgislating them as citizens of the usa was stupid,and has undermined every standard of our institutions ,educational retardation has occured accross the board due to blacks being unable to assimilate material the same as whites,furthermore ths gene pool has been violated with cross breeding ,leaving an abundance of babies without parents,only being cared for by public funds, biolodically the negro has no left side of the brain for technical attributes, our miletary has suffered by accepting negro's beyond the K.P.duty mess hall catagory ,ww-2 would not have been won if negro/s had been given full access on the front line of combat, back up needs to be reliant and not based on a water mellon mentality !

Posted by: sideboom | April 7, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Just tonight I finished reading Frances Parkinson Keyes' last book, All Flags Flying, (published in 1971). It's an amazing book, and well worth anyone's time reviewing it now...for it shows a Republican woman who observed everything meticulously, as wife of the Governor of NH and later a Senator (Henry W. Keyes). FPK herself was a Virginian. Her reports on the life of a politician's family, and all of the social and political interaction, the personalities of figures in the 1920s and 1930s, the many countries she visited whose leaders she met and in whose houses she and members of her family were entertained...these are all fascinating. But much moreso is the growth in her understanding, so that she became more liberal over the years...from a conservative to a liberal Republican. You don't see her kind any more. Too bad. She obviously brought people together, rather than divided them...she herself was a wonderful diplomat for the US. She admired people of every class and race, and came to understand such things as mixed marriages, etc. with a fine 21st century understanding. I always liked the few books of hers I had read, many years ago...now I am going to re-read them. But this one will be my favourite. I doubt now if there is a Republican in the US who can measure up to the standards she and her husband and many of his colleagues, of both parties, set in Washington political and social circles. My recommendation is to read it, and re-read it, and understand what the nation has lost by toadying to money, power, and superficial appearance, rather than to intelligence, good taste, and integrity. There are many lessons to be learned from this book...by both parties, but particularly, and ironically, by the Republican Party, to which Henry Keyes and Frances Parkinson Keyes belonged. How hath the mighty fallen!!!!

Posted by: rationaleditor | April 7, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

That REDNECK CLOWN knew exactly what he was doing, and not doing when he ommitted slavery from that "BS" proclamation...but I guess you idiots that didn't bother to vote will just have to deal with this silly crap...IT SERVES YOU RIGHT!

Posted by: TWilliams1 | April 7, 2010 9:09 PM | Report abuse

tiger woods , is still black,so far, all his ho's are white, the sorrowful thing is that elin was taken to the bed by a user, rather than being attracted to her own race !

Posted by: sideboom | April 7, 2010 9:09 PM | Report abuse

"People who believe the Civil War was fought over slavery are mostly clueless."

History is written by the winners. If the North had been telling people that Confederates had cloven feet and laid eggs for the past 150 years, the people attacking McDonnell would be repeating that story, too.

"The Civil War was fought over slavery" belongs in the Great Lies Of History right next to "George Washington chopped down a cherry tree" and "Christopher Columbus proved the world was round".
http://www.cracked.com/article_16101_the-5-most-ridiculous-lies-you-were-taught-in-history-class.html

Posted by: bblackmoor | April 7, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

DICK 10000,ah,dek10000,I have the answer for you---move! It's OK, you won't be missed.

To blame an entire state of people for the stupid actions of a politician would have all of us living in shame!

Posted by: idiotthere | April 7, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Wow, if there ever was an indictment of our public school system it shows up here. Please go back and read about the history of the Civil War. For the South it was first about taxation. Slavery came up as a secondary issue for the North. But don't let facts get in the way.

Posted by: Bubbette1 | April 7, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Come on people, get your panties out of the wad that is making you so tense!! How long ago did slavery end?/ Do you think that WE need to keep apologizing for something we had nothing to do with?? I know it was bad! But what can we do to change the history of what happened?? We all keep saying we want the racism to die, but most won't let it!!! I caN READ DOWN 3 Statement before I hear they were all white!! We don't like Obama because he is Black! You are racial profiling. You need to apologize for slavery!! Let it go & quit playing the race card already! I am so sick of hearing the same old from the Black people!!!And give me a break about the republicans never admitting they are wrong!! What about Harry Reid saying Obama don't talk like a black man> Or maybe when Biden said he was a clean black man!! So give it a rest and try to live your lives happy or you will die a angry person!!

Posted by: releggneh1 | April 7, 2010 9:17 PM | Report abuse

Is there a "Union History Month?"

Posted by: Lilybelle3 | April 7, 2010 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Confederate History Month for Virginia. Well, o.k. My ancestors predicted the U.S. would feel the reprecussions of The War Between the States for 100 yrs. They fought on both sides - Blue and Gray. It has been over 100 yrs and people are still sensitive about that time. Wonder what my great great's would think about Black History Month in February and BET? Only in America is this possible. It's time to put all of it behind us and move forward. I resent that English is not our native language. I resent that on the census form that after the word White, the word American does not follow. I resent all the complaining from people concerning something that happened 150 years ago. It has been resolved. Get over it. Move on. If you want to find something to complain about, you will. How about something positive for change? Try it, you just might like it.

Posted by: NativeTexan3 | April 7, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Confederate History Month for Virginia. Well, o.k. My ancestors predicted the U.S. would feel the reprecussions of The War Between the States for 100 yrs. They fought on both sides - Blue and Gray. It has been over 100 yrs and people are still sensitive about that time. Wonder what my great great's would think about Black History Month in February and BET? Only in America is this possible. It's time to put all of it behind us and move forward. I resent that English is not our native language. I resent that on the census form that after the word White, the word American does not follow. I resent all the complaining from people concerning something that happened 150 years ago. It has been resolved. Get over it. Move on. If you want to find something to complain about, you will. How about something positive for change? Try it, you just might like it.

Posted by: NativeTexan3 | April 7, 2010 9:28 PM | Report abuse

HOGWASH!!!!

Posted by: lilolme1 | April 7, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

And, Whereas, the Commonwealth of Virginia is now ruled by two perfect white men,
Therefore, it shall henceforth be known as the Commonwealth of McCucciLand.

Posted by: California_Jim | April 7, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

This retreat by the Governor means that somebody is thinking about Black and racially liberal voters in the state. Still, he raised the Confederate flag just before the 2010 elections. Let's hope the GOP doesn't go that way. Let them win fairly not catering to the deluded fantasies of "the children" of slave owners who believe that they are entitled to privileges that don't exist for being White Republicans.

Posted by: sunnycalifornia | April 7, 2010 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Doesn't anyone get tired of this same old same old? Apologizing for something that went on in every nation in every part of the world? New Englanders were the major slave traders and made their fortune on it. They had slavery, but only eliminated it--in New England--because they did not want any people of color in New England.

Why should Southerners have to continually apologize for something that Northerners not only practiced themselves, but made their fortune on?

People, stop watching Hollywood movies and start reading some history--especially original documents that have not been doctored and "interpreted" by so called scholars who have not read any original documents themselves.

Posted by: marielivingstongmailcom | April 7, 2010 9:33 PM | Report abuse

The Civil War never should have happened. The Confederacy should have been allowed to secede. Slavery would have collapsed, it's not economically viable in the long run. What is now the southeastern US would be just another third world craphole proudly flying the confederate flag. The use of force to maintain the union was the biggest blunder in American history. Not to belittle some of the great achievements of the south, after all, the toothbrush was invented in the south. Anywhere else it would have been called a teethbrush.

Posted by: emag | April 7, 2010 9:38 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, free Americans voluntarily allow the present government to place chains on their freedom.

Posted by: Washington13 | April 7, 2010 9:39 PM | Report abuse

You know it just AMAZES me....how dumb people are. The American Civil War was NOT fought over SLAVERY! It just wasn't. Yes it was a PART....but a SMALL part. The reason that the Civil War was fought...The FIRST CIVIL War....was because of the federal "governments" interference in States Rights. Thats it. Thats all. Oh yeah the Commie Liberal Democrats would LOVE for people to believe that slavery was the one and only reason....yeah, they love to rewrite history if they can. But they cant. What happened is what happened. GET OVER IT.

Posted by: NativeCowboy | April 7, 2010 9:48 PM | Report abuse

C'mon, people. Cut the governor a break. He meant to mention slavery ... he just forgot. I'm sure we can all understand how a trivial detail like that might have slipped his mind.

Posted by: lydgate | April 7, 2010 9:49 PM | Report abuse

Why all the Hoo-Hah?

Governor McDonnell must have read the new Texas mandated history texts for their school systems.

Posted by: chamateddy | April 7, 2010 9:49 PM | Report abuse

Why all the Hoo-Hah?

Governor McDonnell must have read the new Texas mandated history texts for their school systems.

Posted by: chamateddy | April 7, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Apology NOT accepted.

Posted by: DDP2 | April 7, 2010 9:53 PM | Report abuse

REVISIONIST HISTORY!

Can you imagine leaving out the Holocaust from German history? There would be a howl of righteous anger and protest from Jewish people!

Well, the Governor of Virginia conveniently left out any mention of slavery in Confederate history!

Confederate history would be a pack of lies without any mention of African slavery.

There is a move to sanitize and whitify Confederate history as a noble and heroic deed!

There is nothing noble in glamorizing Confederate history.

There is nothing great in celebrating a history where states fought a civil war to keep black human beings as the property of white people.


Posted by: stephendelsol | April 7, 2010 9:57 PM | Report abuse

The details of this article are disturbing. Most, if not all politicians usually employ a staff to prepare and check his/her public speeches for serious errors or gaffes that might prove embarrassing. The omission of slavery as part of the confederacy's past is just such an embarrassment. It's as bad as the careful editing that is done in Japanese education concerning their history during WW2. It's strange that this omission was allowed to pass unnoticed. However, in conjunction with the emergence of the Tea Party advocates, this could be a dangerous sign that the Republican Party is willing to risk the integrity of the Union just to make sure that a Black Man does not succeed as an American President. The Republican Party might not be in favor of another Civil War, but their recent outbursts, threats, and attitudes could help inflame such an occurence, especially with agitators like Palin on their side. I've been reading about threats made against Democrat officials. Oddly enough, the Republican Party is very quiet about their opinions concerning these threats. A new American Civil War would be a terrorists dream come true.

Posted by: tonygrafx | April 7, 2010 9:57 PM | Report abuse

Want FACTS all you liberal racists out there??? OK... here you go.
John Brown (May 9, 1800 – December 2, 1859) was an American abolitionist,
and folk hero who advocated and practiced armed insurrection as a means to
end all slavery. He led the Pottawatomie Massacre in 1856 in Bleeding Kansas
and made his name in the unsuccessful raid at Harpers Ferry in 1859.
Brown has been called "the most controversial of all 19th-century
Americans." His attempt in 1859 to start a liberation movement among
enslaved African Americans in Harpers Ferry, Virginia electrified the
nation. He was tried for treason against the state of Virginia, the murder
of five proslavery Southerners, and inciting a slave insurrection and was
subsequently hanged. Southerners alleged that his rebellion was the tip of
the abolitionist iceberg and represented the wishes of the Republican Party.
Historians agree that the Harpers Ferry raid in 1859 escalated tensions
that, only one year later, led to secession and the American Civil War.

Posted by: NativeCowboy | April 7, 2010 9:57 PM | Report abuse

A significant population is reminded of a violent history and the abuse of a people in this country when they think of the confederate flag. There is too much blood on our soil to ignore the idea of celebrating such a violent time. If we care about each other and at all about peace, we, in Virginia, should have a month (a decade) dedicated to healing historical wounds. Peace comes with respect, collaboration and understanding, not division, control and status. No decent person on this earth supports beating and forcing a person to do their will. Confederate History Month serves to remind many that our nation, both north and south, failed to be decent.

Posted by: Lilybelle3 | April 7, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

FACT....Democrats started the FIRST American Civil War. They will start the SECOND also. The Democrats in the SOUTH wanted Slavery. All you have to do is LOOK IT UP! Try the internet. I hear you can find lots of stuff on there. God you people are sooooo freakin DUMB!

Posted by: NativeCowboy | April 7, 2010 10:02 PM | Report abuse

Let me begin by saying that I'm an effete Manhattan liberal. I'm also an expatriate of the boondocks of rural Texas and am not a fan of redneck culture or racism. That said, this story provokes strong ambivalence from me, and I find the other comments in response troublingly myopic.

Firstly, I think that the Governor's use of the phrase 'confederate history month' was in poor taste in that it implies advocacy of the confederate cause as well as suggesting a counterpoint to black history month. Also I don't trust that his motives are pure academic given his political situation

I'll grant that the man issues a good apology, if not a thorough one, as the clearly biased WP 'journalist' subjectively charges in the title. But a good apology goes a long way with me, especially if it isn't full of qualifiers and counter accusations.

The main source of my ambivalence however is my love of history. Every aspect of American culture is intricately tied to the civil war. It was a complex an multifaceted conflict that literally pit our grandparent's grandparents against there own families, and friends. This was the debut of poison gas, trenches warfare, and machine guns. This was the culmination of an unbalanced economic system, a barbaric historical legacy that had become institutionalized, states rights, local politics vs. national, British foreign policy, party politics, and a million other things. Obviously slavery was a huge part of it but it wasn't the only part. And I understand the desire to defend one's confederate ancestors of the charge of being invalided as a people because their society was on the wrong side of history on one issue. Its the same desire I have to reconcile my abhorrence of ancient Roman slavery with my deep admiration of their culture's innumerable contributions to all of Western thought and ultimately my own identity... or the desire to balance my admiration of the Declaration of Independence with its Author's own infringements on human liberty. Ultimately it all just leaves me wandering about one thing: Someday, when the world is a much better place than it is now, will someone look at my life, my relationships, my beliefs, and my culture and dismiss it all because I'm wearing clothes and buying products that were made by impoverished people who are virtually slaves themselves.

Posted by: edrossdontcare | April 7, 2010 10:05 PM | Report abuse

I think rather than asking the governor to apologize for the purposeful omission of the facts about slave owners in Virginia, we should commemorate the civil war by making the governor a slave for the next 4 years. There should be enactments of what the slave life was like in the governors mansion, so that the tourists he is expecting will have a real good understanding of history. There is no other way to commemorate his confederacy.

Posted by: JohnMcCormick | April 7, 2010 10:08 PM | Report abuse

It is so discouraging and sad to see so many of our black citizens continuing to harp over and over about racism in this country. There are some things that are part of our history whether they were right or wrong, they are still historical facts. Why not give the governor the benefit of the doubt; no doubt he had people assisting him in his proclamation writing, mistakes and typos do occur. Don't just immediately accuse him of forgetting the suffering of black slaves of generations past, I don't think any decent American could. There are so many on the liberal left that love to use the race card to justify their liberal and sinful ways of living. Black Americans have their Black History Month and I am glad for them. Wouldn't there be an uproar for sure if we asked for a White History Month. Let's lay the race card aside once and for all and unite together as Americans. Our country is on a path to destruction by the policies of the current administration. We need to be on our knees praying to the God of Heaven for His mercy upon this great land. Our President is going to allow this land to turn into a communist state unless God intervenes and Islam will be our national religion. Let us unite together on those things that are most important to us as Americans, black or white and that is the freedom to live and worship without the fear of persecution from a terrorist religion as Islam. God Save America is my prayer!

Posted by: MarkinNorthCarolina | April 7, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

Is this guy the first one to do what he's done? Do you know?

Posted by: idiotthere | April 7, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Just remember then that the CONFEDERATES were...and still are....DEMOCRATS. The Democrats have always controlled the South. The SOUTH opposed the Abolitionists...or...the Republicans. The Democrats wanted control of people's lives then....just like they do now. I truely find that ignorance is perpetual.

Posted by: NativeCowboy | April 7, 2010 10:14 PM | Report abuse

The cry because of the exclusion of the role of slavery is not about being PC, it's about being true to history, not selective. Indeed, what could be more PC than sanitizing history in order to please the right-wing base?

"Colored Confederates" from Virginia, played a part in the Civil War and deserve to be included in Confederate History Month, not ignored, for ex:

1.The "Richmond Howitzers" were partially manned by black militiamen and saw action at 1st Battle of Bull Run. “Many colored people were killed in the action”, recorded John Parker, a former slave.

2.A quota of 300,000 black soldiers served in the Confederate States Colored Troops. 83% of Richmond's male slave population volunteered for duty. A special ball was held in Richmond to raise money for uniforms for these men. Before Richmond fell, black Confederates in gray uniforms drilled in the streets.

3.Nearly 180,000 Black Southerners, from Virginia alone, provided logistical support for the Confederate military. Many were highly skilled workers: nurses, military engineers, teamsters, ordnance department workers, brakemen, firemen, harness makers, blacksmiths, wagonmakers, boatmen, mechanics, wheelwrights.

4.Blacks were asked to help defend the city of Petersburg, Virginia and were offered their freedom if they did so.

5.In March 1865, the Confederate Secretary Of State, promised freedom for blacks who served from the State of Virginia; “Let us say to every Negro who wants to go into the ranks, go and fight, and you are free…Fight for your masters and you shall have your freedom.” Confederate Officers were ordered to treat them humanely and protect them from "injustice and oppression".

Posted by: TruthFairy | April 7, 2010 10:15 PM | Report abuse

And he "forgets" slavery. That is just great. Just like some of my friends who "forget" that I am part Native American and "forget" that nearly 10 million Native Americans were killed from when the white man first came to the New World to 1900.

That's right, 10 million. That is more than the genocide that Nazi Germany perpetrated on the world.

The inherent racism is so perverse in this "conservative" who was elected in spite of Obama's win in 2008, it jumps off the page at you.

The conservatives promote this governor as a "shining example" of the "revulsion" against Obama. Of course, the "revulsion" is all because of RACE.

Once a Cracker always a Cracker.

I will NOT forget 10 million slaughtered so that "Manifest Destiny" could be fulfilled. I will NOT forget 3 million slaves, at least one million who were killed, so the United States could have cheaper labor than anyone else, and establish its economy at a huge advantage.

All the B.S. of the "Cons" who say "get over it" can't make me forget!

Posted by: gbeale1 | April 7, 2010 10:23 PM | Report abuse

As a Republican, I am deeply offended by Governor McDonnell's failure to even mention the foundational institution of the confederacy--the enslavement of our fellow human beings. The two are inseparable.

For a Republican governor to play around with the noxious nullification doctrine of John C. Calhoun, and then to proclaim a Confederate History Month is a complete anathema to the Party of Lincoln.

While it was fitting for Governor McDonnell to apologize for this omission to even mention slavery, I fear that he remains oblivious to the real problem with his proclamation. It is not that we lack sufficient information about the history of the Confederacy. Americans have had 145 years to study it. What is offensive is the detached tone which characterizes the proclamation itself. The economic institution of slavery and its political manifestation of the Confederacy is not something that anyone with a moral compass should describe with such dispassion.

The attempt to couch the ugly truth with revisionist objectivity cannot hide the horrific reality of both slavery and the Confederacy.

Kevin Holsclaw Vienna,VA


Posted by: kmmlholsclaw | April 7, 2010 10:24 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry, but is every GOP officeholder a complete idiot?

Governor McDonnell issues a proclamation about the effing CIVIL WAR and he fails to mention SLAVERY?

What in the hell is wrong with these people? Earth to GOP: Don't worry - you have the nutcase vote in the bag. Talk about something else for God's sake.

Jeesh.

Posted by: Brittman1 | April 7, 2010 10:29 PM | Report abuse

The confederates were traitors. They were anti-American in support of a nightmarish and cruel system of human bondage, selling breeding rape and degradation. Virginia was a center of slave breeding and export. Southern revisionist historians have obscured the reprehensible nature of this institution. 23 states fought against 11 states to save the union. Without the union we would have been in a much weaker position. These two entities would have been at war with each other like Pakistan and India. As a divided nation we would not have been able to defend ourselves against the empires that reigned then and that arose later. We need to celebrate those who fought on the side of freedom!!!
The traitorous actions of these rebellious states were more dangerous and damaging than a thousand Osama Ben Ladens. They caused a war that ended up killing over 600,000 Americans. In truth, there is an undercurrent to this action that is odious and poisonous to our progress as a society.

Posted by: noword3 | April 7, 2010 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Several comments posted regarding this article demonstrate why commemorating the history of the civil war might be best served through observing a moment of silence.

Posted by: cwwhite | April 7, 2010 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Ulysses S. Grant was a Republican. "Someday, when the world is a much better place than it is now, will someone look at my life, my relationships, my beliefs, and my culture and dismiss it all because I'm wearing clothes and buying products that were made by impoverished people who are virtually slaves themselves." Good comment, I wonder about that myself and try to buy made in USA when I can, trusting the label, of course you can take some heart in the fact that those at the top of the financial world have taken advantage of every human weakness and made it easy for people to forget who makes their stuff. Wonder if we had a chance to see their faces and learn about their lives, if we might change our buying habits? I guess that is why we don't know, capitalism might hit a snag. If most of our ancestors were fully aware of the torture suffered by those who produced their goods, would anything have changed? Or do I give our human race too much credit for being humane?

Posted by: Lilybelle3 | April 7, 2010 10:37 PM | Report abuse

My congratulations cwwhite for the best post of the night.

Posted by: Brittman1 | April 7, 2010 10:37 PM | Report abuse

"Just remember then that the CONFEDERATES were...and still are....DEMOCRATS. The Democrats have always controlled the South. The SOUTH opposed the Abolitionists...or...the Republicans."

How strange that recent Democratic governors of Virginia refused to acknowledge Confederate history month, considering that Democrats were, are and always shall be Confederates!

Those labels may have applied in the 19th century, but the year is now 2010....

Posted by: Rachelva | April 7, 2010 10:37 PM | Report abuse

DOES NO ONE care that the Confederates were Democrats? Does anyone at all want the TRUTH? Or all of you just so many sheep that are being led to slaughter by the Socialists?

Posted by: NativeCowboy | April 7, 2010 10:41 PM | Report abuse

My family settled in Virginia in 1745. By the Civil War in addition to family who remained there are even more family who had moved to points North and West. In the War for Southern Independence my family fought, were imprisoned, and died for the North and for the South. In my family, sons and brothers did fight and die fighting fathers and cousins.
I don't see anyone calling for a celebration for the GAR (Grand Army of the Republic) whose members, by killing so many of their kin in the Confederacy, emerged triumphant.
The good Governor is ignoring the pain of each family who lost part of their own and has, in effect, called on all Virginians to celebrate this tragic loss of life each family continues to suffer today,.
There actually is nothing glorious about the Civil War other than it ended and, as a result, slavery (which is nothing in itself to celebrate) was made illegal throughout the land.
Our Governor seems to have missed the lesson that the Union does not celebrate the War for Southern Independence anymore than we are willing to call it a "Civil War".
The irony of the phrase "Civil War" as well the call to glorify the deaths of the greatest number of Americans ever to die in armed conflict because family members were killing each other makes him bad for Virginia, worse for everybody who has a conscience.

Cynd

Posted by: Cynd | April 7, 2010 10:41 PM | Report abuse

IF you do not know your history Rachelva, then you are doomed to repeat it. Are you really so possesed that you do not care who you are "angry" at? So let me ask you as question Ms Rachelva....why do you think the Democratic governors did not admit that the Democrats were in FAVOR of slavery and that the Democrats started the civil war? So whats your take of that? Or...do yo have one. The Confederate Democrats started the FIRST Civil War. The Democrats will start the SECOND Civil War because they STILL want to control every aspect of peoples lives. Want PROOF??? Well geez. Try the INTERNET! I understand there is a wealth of information there

Posted by: NativeCowboy | April 7, 2010 10:45 PM | Report abuse

Ah, the American education system at work, completely pathetic.
The Governor should not have issued any sort of apology to the ignorant masses that felt slighted by the proclamation. The American "Civil War" was not about slavery as you have been poorly taught in school.

There were a myriad of factors that caused the chasm between "the North" and "the South" greatest of which had to do with unequal tariff, duties and taxes between Northern and Southern states. Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation only freed black slaves in the Confederate States, it did not apply to white slaves, Native American, Asian or any other ethnicity in the South or any people regardless of ethnicity in bondage in the North. Lincoln intended to use the "newly freed blacks" as cannon fodder for Union troops or at the very least to cause turmoil in the South tying up Southern men to prevent them from being able to join the Confederacy. The issue of slavery was not even addressed by either side until 2 years into the war when the North was beginning to lose and Lincoln felt the North needed a new rallying cry on "Moral High Ground". Lincoln's own letters prove this thought process before he signed the proclamation. Not what you were taught in school is it?

The Civil War was over Slavery is rubbish.

It was a war over a giant power grab with power being centered in Washington,D.C. instead of having the states and the peoples of those states retaining the powers granted by The Constitution.

It was Washington, D.C.forcing it's will upon the people, and some of the people chose not to be governed in this fashion and started a revolution.

You are probably the same ignorant people confused why so many people are so upset today over the same type of issue: Washington, D.C. again taking power from the people, ignoring The Constitution.

I pity the uneducated ignorance of the people United States who refuse to learn their own history and continue to repeat it.

Posted by: sircut | April 7, 2010 10:50 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, he offered an apology after he got caught.
What a slime-ball.
And a flip flopper.
And a bigoted fundamentalist DICK.
Keep your eyes on this guy - he's not one yet.

Posted by: jeffc6578 | April 7, 2010 10:50 PM | Report abuse

I have spent the better part of my 44 years reading about and studying the Civil War. One comment posted today mentioned "Civil War History Month", and perhaps that's what it should be called. The Governor's omission was insensitive to say the least if not downright ignorant. However, a "Confederate History Month" does not mean a celebration of racism. To me it's just an awareness to history and obviously slavery is a part of that. Agreed, everyone who served in the Confederate Army was a racist by today's standards...so was everyone in the Union Army...so was Lincoln. Both sides of this continual argument tend to have many facts wrong. Many will claim the war had nothing to do with slavery. Are you kidding me? It had everything to do with it. There were other issues and many are complex, but slavery was the root of it all. The nullification crisis is important, but it too ties into slavery. John Brown's raid at Harpers Ferry could have been the single most important event that plunged the nation into war. That event in 1859 did have just a little to do with slavery the last I checked. At the same time, if anyone thinks that the citizenry of the north was really opposed to slavery on a moral level, perhaps you had better research it a little further. Abolitionists were simply a very vocal minority. In fact, the number of northern manufacturers and businessmen benefitting from slavery was enormous. In short, if cotton, rice, tobacco and sugar cane, (all crops that took massive amounts of year round labor), grew in the north, then that is where slavery would have existed. To fully understand how 19th century Americans felt about slavery, I believe you can only read what they wrote. You can easily see how something that we can't even imagine, like slavery, was considered and viewed as everyday life. Those folks were no different than you or I. Many of you making the "white hoods" comments would have thought slavery was just fine had you lived in the 1860's....and you're right, we don't...we live in 2010. We have the ability to approach the immoral institution of slavery and teach everyone what happened, why it happened and what we did about it.
It is easy to understand the typical response to this debate, but one should realize that slavery and all of it's horrors was an American problem. Not just one that should be laid at the feet of southerners, past or present.

Posted by: Rickard0508 | April 7, 2010 10:52 PM | Report abuse

There is absolutely no doubt in my mind whatsoever, that America is what it is TODAY, thanks to the "passiveness" of Afro-Americans. Had they rebelled against the atrocities brought against them, the U.S. would have been SOMETHING else, but not a SUPERPOWER! Puerto Rico is a colony of the U.S. because we are like the Afro-Americans were....Passive! We should be proud of Afro-Americans because of this! I am in favor of Black Power, but please keep it COOLS! Things are looking better for minorities, thanks to YOU! Look how far you have come! But now, still, beware of the wolves amongst us! Bless you!

Posted by: ricardocoav | April 7, 2010 10:52 PM | Report abuse

NativeCowboy, when did I say I was angry at anybody?

Sounds like you are an abolitionist Republican - shouldn't you then be upset that the Gov. neglected to mention slavery in his discussion of Confederate history?

And if I'm a Confederate Democrat, why am I not celebrating the governor's acknowledgement of my glorious history?

Not sticking around for an answer - good night to you.

Posted by: Rachelva | April 7, 2010 10:54 PM | Report abuse

Bob McDonnell has nothing but contempt for anyone who is not white,beautiful,rich, and healthy. I have cerebral palsy, and I know how he would treat me. He'd either turn his head or look right past me. he severely cut funding for people with disabilities. Therefore, no one who is not like Bob McDonnell deserves his recognition.

Posted by: Invirgina | April 7, 2010 10:56 PM | Report abuse

OMG. Put a sock in it and get over yourselves.

The Governor apologized for an unintended omission in the latest proclamation.

Lord knows we, in Virginia, know there was slavery!

The Governor signed the proclamation for BLACK HISTORY MONTH, in February, in case YOU forgot.

What we also know is that there will always be people who like to create controversy, play the race card and promote racial strife for their own devious purposes.

Hitler enslaved and killed six million Jews and I've never seen a proclamation for Jewish History Month!

I see Muslims, and others, denying the holocaust happened. Did you vent about that?

We are all aware of history, the blacks were slaves and were freed, the white Jews were slaves and cremated.

So, again, put a sock in it and stop deliberately creating racial strife for your own evil, duplicitous purposes.



Posted by: marylou1 | April 7, 2010 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Governer McDonnell is a coward and should be ashamed of himself for buckling under the pressure of the bigots in the media.

Posted by: rebel7254 | April 7, 2010 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Ok so apologies accepted...But, how can someone make such a mistake! I don't believe a word he says. I have seen him in action and I can only say that he is an egotistical man who seems to think that he is the "golden child", the salvation, for the Republicans. He is also a former Regent University graduate and just like CBN, is part of the Pat Robertson Empire and 700 Club member!!! I don't believe anything he says, instead, I think he is an opportunist who had all intentions of rocking the boat! Either way, he shot himself in the foot, his lack of judgment with something like this is nothing but amateurish, not to mention if he and his staff made this mistake, oops, then he is not worth of holding the seat of governor! How can someone be so dumb to oversee something as important as this! As governor of my state for example, one of the first things he did is to cut millions of dollars from public education, but they just so happen that most of those schools are African American schools. As a citizen living in VA I am embarrassed that VA is being represented by McDonnell. Just when we were seeing progress, things turned literally south. Again, apologies accepted, but keep in mind McDonnell, I never liked you and this confirms why. To late buddy, everybody has seen your true colors! You can kiss the White House goodbye!!! We will remember this, just like come November we will remember all Republicans and 34 Democrats!!! You know what I mean! :-)

Posted by: jl2010 | April 7, 2010 10:58 PM | Report abuse

I find some of these comments illuminating.

First: history is written by the victors but whose to say the North really won. They may have won the shooting part of the war but the Jim Crow laws following Reconstruction go to show they didn't real win much else. If the Federal government was not willing to enforce the basic voting rights of millions as the Constitution demanded, it certainly wasn't going to stop Southern schools and ashamed historians from minimizing the real motivation behind the conflict.

An astute historian cannot deny that State's rights for the pre-war Southern states meant protecting slavery. There are numerous property cases, most famously Dred Scott, which show us that Southern states were happy to ignore State's rights when it helped maintain slavery and only cried for State's rights when their abominable institution was under threat. The hint that Lincoln could be an abolitionist was all the motivation SC needed to threaten succession and then succeed.

Further proof of this can be found in the very existence of the Mason Dixon line. During the Constitutional Convention one of the most heated debates was how to deal with slavery. The south felt that if State's could choose then slavery would be abolished when an overwhelming number of new states chose to be free states - since that was the going trend in the world. Under the Articles of Confederation some slave states were actually free states and then had to revert back. So in one of many compromises, not including the 3/5th's compromise, they created the Mason Dixon line and every state below would be slave and every state above would be free... in the future. This conflict did not end in 1789. In 1820 there needed to be a compromise based on slavery. In 1850 there needed to be another compromise, and then there was Bloody Kansas - which was completely about slavery.

Whether or not every Confederate soldier believed in slavery or not is irrelevant; lots of soldiers have to fight for things they don't really believe in. The Confederacy instituted the first draft. The cause of the war is still pretty clear - the Southern states were fighting to keep if not promote slavery. If this was about anything but slavery the South would have abolished slavery before Lincoln just to get help from England and maybe France. But they didn't because they weren't going to free the slaves.

The governor of VA is a monster. By even using the word "Proclamation" in his announcement of a month dedicated to the memory of the Confederacy is code to all his racist Tea-Baggers as to just what he thinks about the Emancipation Proclamation and the evolution of civil rights since then. The North and Lincoln weren't perfect on this issue. They both had very racist moments. The "North" still has VERY racist moments (look at the North's prisons) but at least there is an admission that slavery and racism is wrong. No minimizing and no justifying by glorifying past villainy.

Posted by: teehee57 | April 7, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

"The hint that Lincoln could be an abolitionist was all the motivation SC needed to threaten succession and then succeed."

Succeed? That was enough for me to stop reading.

Posted by: rebel7254 | April 7, 2010 11:06 PM | Report abuse

I'd say it's much too little, much too late.
He should be apologizing for issuing this massively insensitive and divisive proclamation in the first place. The fact that it didn't even occur to him initially that failure to mention slavery would be controversial is evidence either of incredible ignorance, or a much worse failure to realize the horrible black mark the institution of slavery still represents for this country. There is no excuse for this on the part of an elected official as important as as state governor.

Posted by: twm1 | April 7, 2010 11:09 PM | Report abuse

The headline, "McDonnell issues thorough apology for leaving slavery out of proclamation," is not quite true. Virginia's tone-deaf Governor addressed his apology "to any fellow Virginian who has been offended or disappointed." So the apology isn't "thorough," because it leaves out the people of the other 49 States. Many of us have ancestors who died defending the Union that the Confederacy aimed to destroy. We, too, were offended by Gov. McDonnell's attempt to airbrush the true cause of the Civil War, which was slavery.

The fact that the Governor limited his apology to Virginians is, in effect, a further insult to the rest of the country. It is also, I think, suggestive of a mindset on the right that goes beyond demonizing the federal government. Among the more bizarre aspects of the Tea Party movement is that some of the same people who profess to "love America" also talk of seceding from it. Does Gov. McDonnell harbor secret pro-secession sentiments? If not, I'd like to see him amplify his apology by extending it to the rest of the nation. (That is, if he really believes we are "One Nation under God.")

Last point: if Gov. McDonnell wants people like me to spend our tourist dollars in Virginia, he really ought to give me that apology. There are plenty of Civil War memorial sites I can visit in Pennsylvania, Maryland and West Virginia, as well as the other states of the Old Confederacy.

Posted by: bssjersey | April 7, 2010 11:18 PM | Report abuse

Can he just resign his office and go away like the other racist VA governor George Allen? Just thankful that I no longer live in VA, that's a shame ... two black eyes by 'former' governors. At least now he's rapidly backpedaling, after he was briefed by advisor's, that some Virginians still believe that slavery was wrong.

Posted by: madstamina | April 7, 2010 11:25 PM | Report abuse

Refering to slavery, I have an anecdote in reference to Rosa Parks: The year was 1955 and I was 13 years of age. It so happens that I, a light skinned Puertorican, had moved to Harlem in 1953 (two years before) and I never had any problem with any person in Harlem (my god mother was as black as any black can be and my mother was as white as any white can be) and because of my upbringing (there was absolutely no racism whatsoever in my family or brain and racism is only brain induced!)I never thought that anybody could be against me and one day in 1955 when I was in a bus in Harlem, a black lady (today Afro-American-So cool!) came over to me and said: Hey white boy, get up and leave me your seat! Everyone on the bus applauded and cheered her as loudly as they could! I was bewildred at her begging! I didn't undestand anything! A 50 something blackman (Sorry, Afro-American!) called me over to his seat and put his hands around my shoulder and said: Hey, white boy, don't worry, she's just celebrating our deliverence! I didn't understand what he meant! Since this was never discussed in school, I never ever knew what was going on! Despite this incident, I have never, ever hated a black person in my life (I even married one in 1964 and until this day, 2010!) but was always with this frightful thought on my mind...Why? And then in 2005, DING! A bell rang! I heard Rosa Park's story and I thought, "Wow, that was it!" That black lady in the bus, represented Rosa Parks! And I said to myself: "Thank you Lord, that at least, and even 50 years later, I learned that I was not hated by this lady, but that she was "so" proud of Rosa Parks, that she forgot that I loved her as much as I love anyone else! To me, this is an inspiring story! I love blacks...My children are like: Black coffee with Milk and I am proud of it!

Posted by: ricardocoav | April 7, 2010 11:29 PM | Report abuse

Dear readers of comments regarding Governor McDonnells' apology for Confederate month. Apology? What for? Any EDUCATED person no matter what color, race or religion should realize that Confederate history INCLUDES slavery history. Kudos for McDonnell declaring the month of April as "Confederate History" month. ALL history is what creates the present history. For those who aren't familiar with all history of the Confederate period, I suggest you refer to your history books or read on line--just type in Confederate history--you will see that slavery is included in this time period.

Posted by: Fancy1 | April 7, 2010 11:32 PM | Report abuse

nateminor wrote:
For all the young people in this chat, here is a taste of Jim Crow, your grand fathers called the good old days. If the Tea-bagger has this much influence on the Republican Party, where does Michael Steele fit in, was he consulted about this special confederate month. Or is he a front man for the GOP, that squanders hard earn donated dollars on plush bondage night clubs.
For all the young people in Virginia that did not think it was not important to go to the polls. You must tear yourself away from your m-3 players and vote. To their credit, the Tea-baggers, out the vote, and now enjoy you confederate month.
For all the young people IT IS your time to say, NEVER AGAIN.
-------------------
For all of the young people in this chat, it would be constructive to learn which party (the southern Democrats) created the Jim Crow south and which party (the Republicans) passed the first Civil Rights Act in the 1870s upon which the 1964 Civil Rights Act was based. I'm a centrist who knows just a little about history and I'm getting real sick of Dems playing the race card against Repubs at every opportunity. The governor of Va. is an idiot for making such a gaffe, but he isn't a leader of the Republican Party. Right now there really isn't a leader of the Republican Party, but there are many, many intelligent Republicans who are really sick of being called racists by those on the left. This becomes just another opportunity for them to point fingers at the Republicans and Tea Party people (who aren't Republicans) and call them racists. It's gotten real old, and I'm so sick of it that I'm quite likely to vote against the Dems this November. It's one thing to argue over the merits of public policy, it's quite another to play the race card every time someone has the gaul to disagree with you.

Posted by: lbataille55 | April 7, 2010 11:32 PM | Report abuse

Yes, we think McDonnell's proclamation should have gone a lot further. Should have extended to several thousand pages, including detailing how Africans sold their bretheren into slavery and Democrats kep Blacks enslaved even after they got the right to vote. yes, McDonnell could have gone on at great length. All the dude wanted to do was promote tourism, folks. Do you race-baiters have to hog all the limelight all the time?

Posted by: chatard | April 7, 2010 11:34 PM | Report abuse

This proclamation is just flat wrong and offensive. For those who feel the Governor has no reason to apologize nor rescind this proclamation, simply will never understand.

Posted by: bigone1 | April 7, 2010 11:34 PM | Report abuse

The governor decided early on, that it will be easier to apologize to everybody later instead of mentioning slavery at the commemoration getting the racists mad at him. There is no way that anybody, least of all him, forget what the Civil War was fought over. And its people like him that daily declare that they are not racists.

Posted by: sandtrap | April 7, 2010 11:37 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps he's pining for the good ol' days, and he simply forgot that not everyone in the Union was down with that plantation owner lifestyle.

Of course, we're not from one of those "pro-America" regions of the nation, so what do we know...

Posted by: labman57 | April 7, 2010 11:38 PM | Report abuse

These comments are ridiculous. Hate filled people who think they are so morally superior to an entire state that they call hate filled.

Posted by: kls1 | April 7, 2010 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Many black people are living today in the past of what it was like in the 18th and 19th century and that's not happening today and you can't change what happened, the past is the past. And you can't blame and take it out on today's generation for what happened in the past, It's too late, the past is gone. And with that slavery is gone.

That would be like the Jews blaming today's German population for holocaust, it's too late. This generation had nothing to do with it. It would be just as wrong.

Unfortunately slavery continues to carry on today in heart and mind of almost every black person alive. And I read about it everyday on these very blogs. Time has moved on but they haven't and they never will, 500 years from now black people will still say that white people are racist. It's old news. They will never say it ended in America because if they did, they would not have nothing to blame white people for. They are so used to carrying it around with them like a crutch that they would not be able to function day to day. Just like when the Soviet Union dropped communism and became a democracy, so many people where so used to the crutch of communism, they had no idea of how to function in a free society.

Many people will be angry at me for saying this but it needs to be said. Drop the chains and be free, you are free, only now you are holding yourself back and you now live in the shell of slavery's past by your own doing. Today's white generation has nothing to do with slavery and if you think they do then you are living in the past and bitter and that is wrong.

Black people can blame white people and call them racist all they want today, we know it's not true, but your so caught up in the past that you would or don't want too see it anyway. Because then you would lose your crutch.

Change in the heart makes change in the mind.

Posted by: bozobabbling | April 7, 2010 11:46 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, and George Allen didn't mean to say "macaca" or wear Confederate pins or have Confederate flags in his office either.

This is a real problem for the Republican Party. Ever since they (the corporate oligarchs/plutocrats) inherited the Dixiecrats courtesy of Richard Nixon's "Southern Strategy" its like they married into a family of idiots that continues to embarrass them and in the long term shrink their demographic base of support.

Sure they got the numbers they needed in the short term to elect a "B" actor President with the gift of gab, but they also get a lot of embarrassment with a draft dodger landing on an aircraft carrier declaring "mission accomplished", a racist southern senator supporting his mulatto daughter in secret while he battles against civil rights, congressmen who shout out shameful epithets in the House Chamber in front of cameras and Virginian Governors who say stupid things and roll over with proclamations on behalf of nuts. I wonder if they ever even wince when these crackpots
make headlines.

As far as Governor McDonnell is concerned, he probably learned his timing and lack of common sense from Regent University. Probably took an important and seminal course in Pat Robertson political analysis and comment.

McDonnell and his wacky AG are goners. Virginia minus DC equals Mississippi. It gets even worse for them as they encourage wackos refuse to send in their census forms. I hope we don't have to count these people just as they overlooked some little thing like slavery in their original proclamation.

This whole incident can be distilled down to the following statement: The Republican Party is the Party of Plutocrats (look it up) dependent on the white racists of the South including their coiffed haired Evangelical preacher wing to win public office. The Party does not appeal to the "angels of our better nature". Quite the contrary. Their elected congressmen stand out on balconies of the Capitol of this Nation and egg on Fascists.

Posted by: explorers100 | April 7, 2010 11:55 PM | Report abuse

It's disturbing--but also, on another level, fascinating--to read all these tortured arguments that the Civil War wasn't actually about slavery, but rather economics. That's a silly proposition, because you can't separate the two. Slavery was an integral part of the Southern economic system, which was closer to feudalism than modern market capitalism. The slave economy was not only cruel and immoral, but it also was a bad system that prevented the efficient flow of labor, stymied local manufacturing, and tended to enrich a few wealthy people who consumed excessively, while most of the free population had a lower standard of living.

Go to Google Books and look up Eugene Genovese's book "The Political Economy of Slavery" and read the introduction, at least.

Posted by: pjkiger1 | April 7, 2010 11:57 PM | Report abuse

I'm a tenth generation Virginian and a descendant of slave owners. The custom of my forefathers was embarassing and regrettable.

Setting aside Governor McConnell's misinterpretation of the Civil War's relationship to slavery, he is still missing the point of our lackluster reconstruction. It is appalling that minorities still aren't looked upon as equal by many whites.

Governor McConnell should have asked us to reflect upon our collective prejudice TODAY. He could have posed questions to correct tomorrow's wrongs and challenged us to invest in education, health care, inner city enterprises, equality in the judicial system and turning our prisons into dignified correctional facilities.

I see yesterday's Confederates in today's Teabaggers. :( They're still fighting the Civil war and reconstuction. I support the policies of Lincoln, Roosevelt, Kennedy, King and Johnson. I sincerely hope we can take a giant leap forward and correct some of today's sins under the leadership of President Obama.

Posted by: DGSPAMMAIL | April 8, 2010 12:08 AM | Report abuse


Yeah, McDonnell, we have seen this before.

Leave it out...intentionally.

Then apologize. To get more publicity.

Sarah Palin is smarter than you.

Posted by: xcessiveheat | April 8, 2010 12:09 AM | Report abuse

This is a post I put on a previous article but I am reposting it because i feel so strongly about it:
Really I would have to say if anyone is surprised they are a fool. Republicans, GOP, southern states, conservatives, confederate pride, What ever you want to call it has strong ties to slaverey and racsim. A lot of white people are racist, but do to progress that has been made it is now a bit more discreet, or there is usually some sort of manufactured facade that proceeds the root feeling or opinion. The GOP is mostly white, there are a lot of racist white people in power america it is really that simple. This appeals to his fundamental constituency, he will recevie numerous contributions, and be priased for his courage witin his base and that is really the sad part. Bigotry and racism still is very prevelant here in America, and every so often a GOP member expresses there real feelings to charge their base. To say he did not acknoledge slavery because it was not significant enough exemplifies ignorance and downright racism, but if your an educated minorty you are not surprised at all, this is the way it has always been. When was the last time a white person was shot by a cop without proable cause, never. Do a google news search it happaends to black people EVERY SINGLE DAY, when was the last time a white man was beaten by police never. A prison system that is majority minorty but the population of the the country is over 60% white. I guess these sorts of things never happend to them because white people are perfect law abiding citzens. Really, next story please this is so everday in america especially below the mason dixon line.

Posted by: cooperbj411 | April 8, 2010 12:12 AM | Report abuse

It's almost humorous but not at all funny how some of the IDIOTS that are responding with comments like slavery was started in the North and Lincoln condoned slavery and blacks want a Black History Month and on
and on Ad Nauseum makes slavery any less vile and reviling than it was.You are also the people that looked the other way when millions of Jews were murdered by Barbarians.Those that owned slaves whether they were your forebears or the founding fathers of this nation were supporting and condoning a practice that to say the least was uncivilized and INHUMAN. When will you evolve to the point that you realize that we all came from the same seed that originated in the continent that all of these people were kidnapped from.The positive thing is that there are so many that have evolved and are determined that these inhumanities "never happen again".

Posted by: misewicz | April 8, 2010 12:15 AM | Report abuse

I thought this was an excellent apology. The first sincere and honest one I've come across in a long time.

Posted by: AJBF | April 8, 2010 12:15 AM | Report abuse

The majority of black people in this country, 96% to be exact, are still slaves, a slave to Barrack Obama and the hope and change he promised in 2008, no different than the white people in Germany that fell slave to Adolf Hitler and the hope and change he promised in Germany in the 1930's.

I hope I am wrong, but if I'm right, there is gonna be a run on pitch forks and torches!

Posted by: bozobabbling | April 8, 2010 12:17 AM | Report abuse

"The new constitution has put at rest, forever, all the agitating questions relating to our peculiar institution – African slavery as it exists amongst us – the proper status of the negro in our form of civilization. This was the immediate cause of the late rupture and present revolution. Jefferson in his forecast, had anticipated this, as the "rock upon which the old Union would split." He was right. What was conjecture with him, is now a realized fact. But whether he fully comprehended the great truth upon which that rock stood and stands, may be doubted. The prevailing ideas entertained by him and most of the leading statesmen at the time of the formation of the old constitution, were that the enslavement of the African was in violation of the laws of nature; that it was wrong in principle, socially, morally, and politically. It was an evil they knew not well how to deal with, but the general opinion of the men of that day was that, somehow or other in the order of Providence, the institution would be evanescent and pass away. This idea, though not incorporated in the constitution, was the prevailing idea at that time. The constitution, it is true, secured every essential guarantee to the institution while it should last, and hence no argument can be justly urged against the constitutional guarantees thus secured, because of the common sentiment of the day. Those ideas, however, were fundamentally wrong. They rested upon the assumption of the equality of races. This was an error. It was a sandy foundation, and the government built upon it fell when the "storm came and the wind blew." Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite idea; its foundations are laid, its cornerstone rests upon the great truth, that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery – subordination to the superior race – is his natural and normal condition." -Alexander Stephens, Vice President of the Confederacy

Sure sounds like the continued legitimacy of SLAVERY was the primary reason for the Southern States to attempt to secede thus triggering the Civil War. If the U.S. Government and the U.S. Constitution had not been a threat to the continued legitimacy of slavery, the South would have NEVER seceded.

The idea that the Civil War was about State's Rights is BS. If the federal government had forced new states to be slave states, the South would have been more than happy to allow them to wield such power. The South was only against the federal government when it did not do their exact bidding, if it had been on their side they would have rallied behind it in support.

Posted by: paulflorez | April 8, 2010 12:20 AM | Report abuse

What a clown. Obviously he got an earful from moderate Republicans who must have been horrified. Certainly the Tea Baggers were all for Confederate Glory Month.

Posted by: SeattleOrca | April 8, 2010 12:22 AM | Report abuse

What a clown. Obviously he got an earful from moderate Republicans who must have been horrified. Certainly the Tea Baggers were all for Confederate Glory Month.

Posted by: SeattleOrca | April 8, 2010 12:23 AM | Report abuse

I guess that none of the above folks have heard the statement " Those who forget the lessons of the past are doomed to make the same mistakes."

By remembering the Confederacy and the Civil War time frame, we are trying to not repeat those mistakes.

Posted by: sf46 | April 8, 2010 12:23 AM | Report abuse

Do not be fooled - McDonnell is Virginia's George Bush. A born again idealogue (read his Regent's U Master's Thesis...) who speaks in code much the same as the Tea Partiers and Palin set. Stunningly regressive, a profound embarrassment for the Commonwealth. Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory and it is not this governor.

Posted by: 112153 | April 8, 2010 12:33 AM | Report abuse

Hi out there, I'm not a slave in real life but I used to play one on TV in the 1970's. You might remember me, I was a butler in house full of crazy white people for four years and then I broke the chains and got my own show, "Benson",

Now I don't know a whole lot about slavery or the civil war nor was I alive back then to actually experience it. But it seems to me we are arguing about something we have no control over, we only have control of today. We have no control of the past, but yet we throw ourselves in it like we were actually there and know the complete story. We can read about it but we can only put the people that were actually there in it and we have to make sure that it never happens today or in the future. That is where we fit, in today and the future.

Posted by: bozobabbling | April 8, 2010 12:34 AM | Report abuse

Oh come on. We know now that there was not slavery. The LIBs always spin the truth to suit their political agenda.

A compassionate conservative opinion:

Us Compassionate conservatives did those poor NEGRO people a favor. We gave them an all expense paid trip to this great country, gave them food and water a place to live and taught them a trade. Those uppity Negros should be grateful.

Or maybe the Guvner will spin it this way next:
Slavery- what slavery. Plantation owners invented that American tradition of OUTSOURCING in order to keep prices down and to get people to do the work your typical AMERICAN would not do. They just got it wrong. THey now know it is cheaper and more expedient to send the jobs OVERSEAS instead of having to bring the workers here.

Posted by: racerdoc | April 8, 2010 12:35 AM | Report abuse

paulflorez - in response to the quote by Alexander Stephens:

Stephens was a white supremacist. However, the inconvenient truth is that the vast majority of white Americans at the time - including the North - held believed in white supremacy.

The North did not make war on the South to stop slavery. This is proven fact. Only after a couple of years and fear of foreign support for the Confederacy did the Lincoln propaganda machine start insinuating that the North was fighting to free the slaves. I'm not going to do research for you here, but Lincoln said himself that if he could "preserve the Union without freeing a single slave, I would do it". The North made war on the South because they knew a free South that could establish free foreign trade would dry up the protective tariff revenue that the Northern economy had become so dependent on. Again, quoting Lincoln when asked why he didn't just let the South go: ""Let the South go? Let the South go? Where then shall we get our revenues!"

Lincoln also made clear in the presidential debates before his first election that he was emphatically against the idea that the "negro" was equal to the white man. His home state of Illinois made it illegal for blacks to even live there until the law was repealed in 1865, and Illinois wasn't the only state to have such laws.

Lincoln was not so different from Alexander Stephens on the issue of white supremacy. He was also in line with mainstream American culture at the time. Sadly most Americans simply accept Lincoln as a holy saint who championed freedom and equality, when quite the opposite is actually true.

As I said in a post that the owner of this blog is apparently having to review, the last 4 states to join the Confederacy only did so after Lincoln's "call for volunteers" in response to Fort Sumter effectively declared war on the Confederacy. Slavery as a whole was in decline in these 4 states. However, it was in these states that the vast majority of major battles were fought during the war and Confederate armies from these states by far sustained the most casualties in comparison with the original seven Confederate states.

Posted by: rebel7254 | April 8, 2010 12:50 AM | Report abuse

It's an interesting thought experiment to imagine if the North had let the South secede. Seems likely that many decades later, if the South was still surviving as a slave country (which it likely would have), that the South would have allied itself with Nazi Germany, Japan, and Italy--countries with similar political philosophies. Would the Allies have won the war with the South as Nazi allies? Who knows.

Posted by: SeattleOrca | April 8, 2010 12:54 AM | Report abuse

"It's an interesting thought experiment to imagine if the North had let the South secede. Seems likely that many decades later, if the South was still surviving as a slave country (which it likely would have)"

The South would "likely" have been a slave country for many decades? What do you base this on?

"that the South would have allied itself with Nazi Germany, Japan, and Italy--countries with similar political philosophies. Would the Allies have won the war with the South as Nazi allies? Who knows."

That's absurd and offensive. You display a profound level of ignorance by comparing Southern political philosophy with those countries. I'll take that back though if you'll back up the statement wih some examples of the supposedly "similar political philosphies".

Posted by: rebel7254 | April 8, 2010 1:07 AM | Report abuse

It's an interesting thought experiment to imagine if the North had let the South secede. Seems likely that many decades later, if the South was still surviving as a slave country (which it likely would have), that the South would have allied itself with Nazi Germany, Japan, and Italy--countries with similar political philosophies. Would the Allies have won the war with the South as Nazi allies? Who knows.

-------------------------------------------

Please stop thinking, It's scary!!!

Why do idiots like you and others on here try to put there spin on history.

Get a life! You are retarded.

Posted by: bozobabbling | April 8, 2010 1:10 AM | Report abuse

Why should the Governor apology for doing what was/is expected of 2010 Republican Governors? His original version is what he meant (and what his base wanted) and any addendum to me and others is nothing more than a joke. As an African American and Democrat I know that confederate month, and associated celebrations, is very important to many in the state of Virginia. Was this a huge mistake or the Governor establishing his track record back to the "George Allen era." He want say anything about Pat Robertson negative comments, supports the discriminatory issue regarding the Gays and Lesbians, now this. Finally, this is just another VA tea party supported backlash under the umbrella of "Republicans United Against Obama (RUAO). Many don't like Doug Wilder, but he did an excellent job issuing his Confederate Month proclamation while Governor.

Posted by: wjhil69 | April 8, 2010 1:13 AM | Report abuse

That's absurd and offensive. You display a profound level of ignorance by comparing Southern political philosophy with those countries. I'll take that back though if you'll back up the statement wih some examples of the supposedly "similar political philosphies".
__________________________________

What's absurd and offensive is trailer trash like you positing that the Civil War was about anything else than the South preserving its "way of life"--a way of life that was fundamentally premised on slavery.

As for "ignorance," well, I'm not from the South--the region of the country with far and away the lowest educated population in the country. Pot, meet kettle . . .

Posted by: SeattleOrca | April 8, 2010 1:17 AM | Report abuse

Well dear African American fellow citizens and all others,

The liberal progressives (the same ones that made up 100% of the Union Army since the civil war has now been declared only about slavery) and who during and afterwards kept blacks in separate armies, ghetos, etc. etc. etc. (no mixing lace with rags right?) have defended you again ...

...and they will now proceed to ignore you, keep you under control in ghetos in all large Northern & Western cities ... then come back the next election period to get you to the polls, as they have since 1865... and you will still vote 95% with them.

We have gone one more step towards divisiveness ... believe what you will about the Confederacy 150 year ago, but it is the Union winners of that war who have had the power that has kept you separate and unequal (schools, jobs, unions etc.) EVER SINCE - while throwing crumbs .... using the "slavery" argument to keep you under control and voting for them....

Posted by: sally62 | April 8, 2010 2:26 AM | Report abuse

How convenient that Gov. McDonnell forgets, if he ever knew, that Jews were responsible for the black slave trade in the Americas and that the vast majority of slaves in the Caribbean Islands were White men and women. www.osu.edu/researchnews/archive/whtslav.htm

Posted by: colonelhouse | April 8, 2010 3:32 AM | Report abuse

First of all, whoever you are, slave trade in Africa is carried out mostly by the original slave makers...the Arabs.

Confederate History month is important to make our youth aware of our nation's hypocritcal rise to power. Don't hide it...praise it so folks can see the ugliness of it. People may as well call it White History Month right? Well, no, it includes too many other folks.

Let it be known. Let it be known, the whole ugly truth. Freedom of speech...not a selective deal...Speak out, reveal your dumbness Virginia, cradle of fame that includes Jamestown. What a legacy. Ought to change you name because Queen Elizabeth for whom the state was named, was not a virgin. Just ask Dudley and Walsingham, if you can find them. They got it. Maybe Sir Francis too. My hero. Yes Virginia!

Posted by: gigger | April 8, 2010 5:14 AM | Report abuse

First of all, whoever you are, slave trade in Africa is carried out mostly by the original slave makers...the Arabs.

Confederate History month is important to make our youth aware of our nation's hypocritcal rise to power. Don't hide it...praise it so folks can see the ugliness of it. People may as well call it White History Month right? Well, no, it includes too many other folks.

Let it be known. Let it be known, the whole ugly truth. Freedom of speech...not a selective deal...Speak out, reveal your dumbness Virginia, cradle of fame that includes Jamestown. What a legacy. Ought to change you name because Queen Elizabeth for whom the state was named, was not a virgin. Just ask Dudley and Walsingham, if you can find them. They got it. Maybe Sir Francis too. My hero. Yes Virginia!

Posted by: gigger | April 8, 2010 5:16 AM | Report abuse

There are owners who MUST have slaves of one sort or another. Today, we have WAGE SLAVES which works out better for the "Simon Lagrees" of the world.
Pay the lowest wage possible and send the "slaves" home to take care of themselves. The rest of the taxpayers are co-supporters through the welfare system.
Illegal aliens are the New Slaves of the U.S.
They should be emancipated.
zz

Posted by: zenzender | April 8, 2010 5:23 AM | Report abuse

Too late, Bobby! You've already shown your true colors. Lets hope people the good people of Virginia remember this.

Posted by: davidboyd11 | April 8, 2010 6:43 AM | Report abuse

Too late, Bobby! You've already shown your true colors. I'm sure Wal-Mart has sheets for sale in your size.

Posted by: davidboyd11 | April 8, 2010 6:45 AM | Report abuse

Confederate Month

I am not sure what Jim Crowe and the GOP have in common with Confederate Month? Was it not the Democrats that up until the 1960's fought for Segregation and fought against Desegregation and against the black votes. Yes I do think the young people should vote to stop the descrimination that is used every day when it comes to thinking like that.

Confederate Month should also be taught to bring a little history back so that thinkers like the last reader doesnt insight hate. Their were hundreds of thousands if not millions of americans that were not only forced to fight but fought in favor of freedom from slavery. Does that not count for anything. Or was it just another lesson taught not learned.

Be it GOP or Democrat it doesnt matter what matters is that people read and learn about th laws being forced into vote. Remember who caused the wrong and do things by the law not by hate. Use the laws we have on the books to defend us from wrong doers like those who create laws but exempt themselves from those laws the create.

Posted by: rnostrand | April 8, 2010 6:50 AM | Report abuse

As a politician, McDonnell should have known how to sell this from the get go. Had he done a better job at it, then there wouldn't be so many angry folks. That being said, I do agree that history is meant to be studied, even the history we would rather sweep under the rug and forget about because it is too painful. I agree that we should be able to study and talk about our Confederate history so that we learn from our mistakes and never again think ourselves so entitled that we are better than another race/culture/sex/etc. I hope that, now that McDonnell has corrected himself that we can all move on.

Posted by: JM43076 | April 8, 2010 8:27 AM | Report abuse

I'm glad that the governor woke up to the error of omitting slavery from historical consideration, no doubt realizing that the issue would become all the more glaring by virtue of being left out, thus guaranteeing that he'd never hear the end of it because such omission would leave a gaping hole in the story of Virginia's history. Consideration of slavery need not degenerate into a guilt-tripping, name-calling, finger-pointing exercise--It's part of world and U.S. history, and not just of the Confederacy, either. No one should be afraid of history. There is no society on this planet that didn't have something ugly in its past. We need to study those things, too, so we don't repeat them. Man's inhumanity to his fellow man is as old as the history of mankind and should be studied as such.

Posted by: Artisan1 | April 8, 2010 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Someone made a good point. What does RNC Chairman, Michael Steele, think about Confederate History Month?

The month to celebrate treason, sucession, and slavery!

How about it, Steele?

Posted by: free-donny | April 8, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

As a history teacher and college professor, I am appalled at the ignorance I have seen spewed on this page. Most of you need a major history lesson, starting with the fact that slavery, while detestable, was not genocide. If this was the case, the American slave population would have been decimated, not the fastest growing by natural reproduction. I am in no way, shape, or form condoning slavery, but we must do away with political correctness and look at the FACTS. Second, most Virginia boys who took up arms in the Confederate army did not own slaves, nor were they fighting to defend it. They took up arms because they knew their homes were about to be invaded (AFTER President Lincoln called for 75,000 troops to put down the "Southern rebellion"). Finally, many of you have forgotten that racism existed outside of the South. Numerous Northerners profited from slavery, whether it be from the slave trade or from goods produced by slaves. So, before you condemn Gov. McDonnell, perhaps you should read a history book. I am the proud descendant of four Confederate soldiers, and I commend Gov. McDonnell for his proclamation.

Posted by: sarah_s81 | April 8, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

Sarah_s81, respectively, as we both well know, history's treatment of the confederacy depends on WHICH history book you read.

You seem to be ignoring the fact that the "rebs" chose to commit treason and chose their flag over the American flag. No one is saying that every soldier wearing gray owned slaves - so to argue the opposite is a red herring indeed.

While there were other factors contributing to the Civil War, to ignore the major issue of slavery is ridiculous. That is the point being made about Gov. McDonnell's declaration. It is difficult to soundly condemn slavery in one breath and urge (or mandate) the celebration of a treasonous government that would defend slavery in the next.

Posted by: free-donny | April 8, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Free-donny, if you will re-read my post, you will see that I never said that slavery was not a factor in the Civil War. However, it did not become a major issue until Pres. Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, effective January 1, 1863. Of course slavery was a factor, but it cannot be treated as if it was the only factor.

As to your comment that the "Rebs" were committing treason, you might research the compact theory, which was taught in nearly every institute of higher learning in this country in the antebellum years, including the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. The compact theory, in short, states that the United States were created by 13 sovereign states, and that these states retained the right to secede. Only because Pres. Lincoln chose to disagree were the Confederate states considered to have committed treason.
You might also remember that there were several occasions when Northern states toyed with the idea of seceding, as early as during the War of 1812, with the Hartford Convention. Additionally, radical abolitionists such as William Lloyd Garrison, advocated secession--from the South. Was that treasonous?

Yes, unfortunately you are right--the treatment of the Confederacy does depend on which book you read. However, since most history books (at least until the World War II era) were written in the North, many factual aspects of Confederate history have been omitted.

Posted by: sarah_s81 | April 8, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Sarah,

We may differ on some POV's, but I am thankful for the thoughts you offer, and your intelligent tone.

Regarding any abolitionist attempts ad secession, I'd have to categorize that as treasonous as well. The slavery issue was one to resolve internal to our nation...which was unfortunately resolved slowly and after much bloodshed.

One of my other points against McDonnell's announcement (they may only be mine) is that to celebrate the confederacy is nearly a complete reversal to any belief that President Lincoln was one of our best Presidents and one of the most severely tested.

To celebrate the confederacy is to ignore Black Virginians (especially those whose ancestors were slaves).

In your earlier comment, you noted that

"They took up arms because they knew their homes were about to be invaded (AFTER President Lincoln called for 75,000 troops to put down the "Southern rebellion")."

That may indeed have been the perception of many a "reb", but are we to ignore the perception of the slaves. Such an "invasion" would have no doubt been viewed by slaves as a savior. Indeed, their liberation was possible ONLY after an "invasion" by the Union.

Thanks.

Posted by: free-donny | April 8, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

His intent was obvious. Now like all Republican racists he is caught. He did not recantjust tried to excuse himself.

Posted by: bama510 | April 8, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Subject: Not ready to visit Virginia

Dear Governor,
Thank you for admitting your mistakes -- it was probably a mistake to revive the Confederate History Month proclamation in the first place. I do not know why it took you so long to acknowledge slavery as part of the painful history of Virginia and our country. I hope your future experiences allow you to see more of what the rest of us see in these situations. I'm very sorry to have to state things that might be obvious, but I believe you need to surround yourself and hire staffers from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds and experiences that can provide you with insights and perspectives that are unlike your own. Take care and good luck.

Posted by: chanchito | April 8, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

The major thing that bothers us are the accusations that McDonnell is a racist, for accidentally omitting slavery in his proclamation. A major contributing factor to celebrating Confederate History month is the fact that Richmond (our state's capitol for those of you who do not know) was the capitol of the confederacy and is now the home to the Confederacy Museum. We celebrate Confederate History month because, like it or not, it is a major part of our country, and more importantly our state's history. The point of Confederate History month is not to celebrate slavery, it is to acknowledge that part of our past and to promote further learning about our history, perhaps so that such conflicts and atrocities are avoided in the future.

As for the accusations that McDonnell is racists they are completely absurd. First of all, he should not need to include the memo that the Confederacy in one way or another supported slavery, that (hopefully) should be common knowledge to all Americans. Despite this his overall intent was not to be racist, why would he intend to be openly racist? Confederate History month has been observed in Virginia long before McDonnell was governor.

Finally we would like to conclude with the sad state of this comment section, a republican governor slips up once and the democratic nutjobs (not saying all democrats are nutjobs only the ones who are flying completely off the handle about this)come out of the wood work screaming "racist!". To make generalized statements about an entire political group such as "like all Republican racists he is caught" is an accurate description of the state of politics in america today, to dismiss someone's ideas based solely on the fact that they are associated with a political party is a hindrance to the democratic process and a description of the sad political discrimination that exists in our country today.

Posted by: sarah_s81s_students | April 8, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

I just don't see any reason for declaring any month as "Confederate History Month". And for those who keep saying that, "slavery was practiced in the North too", so what! Slavery is still slavery no matter where its practiced. You sound like whinning children. And it really doesn't matter why the Civil War started. It did happen. But to celebrate it, well I for one don't think so. That's just how "I" feel about it.

Posted by: ltmo1 | April 8, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

It's simply amazing how Southern whites can not, and never have accepted the fact that the final outcome of the Civil War was utter defeat for their cause. Their cause was the continuation of the enslavement of human beings; that's it; everything else that they use to white wash it over with is simply untrue. The South chose to succeed from the United States of America in order to perpetuate and keep slavery alive; leaving the Union by force of arms and insurrection; it's called "treason." Slavery or enslavement of humans beings is the greatest evil known to man. Even after their crushing defeat, they continued slavery in other insidious forms called "Jim Crow and segregation," The biggest mistake we as a nation made following the war was to let these villainous cowards back into our Union. And yet they want to memorialize the Civil War! Do we honor Hitler and the Nazis for what they did to Europe and the Jews? Look at these Southerners today, have they changed? No; do they love our country no? Do they still believe in segregation, slavery, and of course "Jim Crow?" Of course they do! It's in their genes; anger, hate, jealousy, and a huge inferiority complex. Their only use for African-Americans is entertainment, and house cleaning. They do everything conceivable, and in their power to keep blacks down no matter what. However, here's one of the greatest hypocrisy's of it all; they can't win at football, basketball, baseball, or track-in-field without blacks; seventy plus percent of their teams are composed of blacks. In just the last 5 years do you think Florida, Alabama, or LSU would have won a national championship without blacks? Everyone with even half a brain knows the answer to that; it's NO! What would Kentucky or North Carolina basketball be without black players? Nobody, that's what, and the real good black players turn pro within a year or two. Do you think they have any love to live in place where their just pawns in a game? Get real! Tim Tebow is just an average white boy playing football at Florida; not even worth a high place in the NFL draft. He would have never won stink without the black players at Florida; that's a fact. But gosh; with those unrecognized black players he's turned into a Southern white God; even awarded the Heisman trophy; there's a joke! Lot's of Southern white money given to the right people can get you just about anything, even national championships; you think? Well my fellow bloggers, it's time to "get real." Call a spade a spade; racism is still very much alive a well in the "good old South."

Posted by: havasloop | April 8, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

I would like to personally back up ltmo1 on this one, I for one personally agree with him. I mean it really doesn't matter why hundreds of thousands of young men died 100 years ago. That goes for the rest of history, why should it matter, to quote ltmo1 "it just happened" theres really no reason we should be studying it and remembering it. Its not like we in our civilized society could ever commit the atrocities of history again. On behalf of the sensible people in this world I would like to thank ltmo1 for showing the rest of you ignorant people the way.

P.S. (this is satirical)

Posted by: sarah_s81s_students | April 8, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Shame...Its not his shame...The Virginians that voted for him and put him there should be shamed. But then again..I guess that's what your kind wanted. How can celebrate confederacy when the mere mention of it illicits contempt. I have an idea...why don't we celebrate the attack of 9/11...how about the United States refusal in 1948 to help Jews flew Hitler's regrime? Klan, humm...he's not done yet!

Posted by: kkporter45 | April 8, 2010 2:52 PM | Report abuse

My goodness. I am not going to be sorry because my family fought for Southern Rights. I am not going to be sorry because my family had adopted the economic system of the era. I am sorry that many lines of my family were destroyed by lincoln the mass murderer. I am sorry that 3 young children, blood relatives were poisoned by a 'domestic' before the war of northern aggression. She was hanged. There is no right or wrong, just history. I would like to see compensation paid for the family farm which was burned by northern invaders. So, as anyone can tell, there are multiple views on the subject.... Mine just happen to be correct.

Posted by: BobHenry1 | April 8, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

This makes my teeth itch! Always want to hide the truth to cover the blood stains, and then use it to paint a pretty picture; not to mention you, again, record HIS-story not actual/factual HISTORY! How could you choose to EXCLUDE such a homicidal and atrocious truth and, yet, you celebrate and PROclaim April as Confederate History Month WHEREAS you should Eulogize, Funeralize and then DISclaim it (without the rearing of an existing sequel in any form) period! These three (3) are inseparable (Son/Boy!) SLAVERY-DENIAL-CONFEDERACY; but given your historic expertise in Deception and Trickery, today; you make it a politically correct Remedy/Resolve, by virtue of an (INGENUINE/false) APOLOGY. Let’s also declare a NATIONAL APOLOGY MONTH (by the way, what's the Declaration’s enactment date for the "S" shaped politicians’ (versus honest ones) that declares an APOLOGY corrects and makes THEM whole)? As a native Washingtonian, in Washington, DC, I can’t believe this is the article I’m reading as I eat a slice of cherry (George Washington) pie - pardon my sudden illness of regurgitation.

Posted by: singramapwuorg | April 8, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

I just want to remind sarah_s81, that before they were slaves, they were Africans and that millions of Africans were killed during the hundred of years of the Atlantic Slave Trade. Not only were they killed, their descendents have no religious or cultural connection to their forefathers due to the purposeful brutal treatment imparted onto the slaves so that their culture and history would be destroyed. After writing this I would agree with you that this isn't genocide... Because genocide is to soft of a word for what was done to Africans.

Posted by: youvebeentook | April 8, 2010 5:52 PM | Report abuse

What is Gov. McDonnell apologizing for?

Posted by: yogibear | April 8, 2010 10:40 PM | Report abuse

Judging by most of the comments, a month devoted to studying the Civil War would be well spent. You might try finding answers to some questions such as (1)If the war was to end slavery why was slavery legal throughout the war in the North? (2)Why didn't the Emancipation Proclamation apply to Missouri, Kentucky, Maryland, or Delaware? (3)If the Confederates were traitors why was the charge of treason dropped against Jefferson Davis?

Posted by: charles26 | April 8, 2010 11:11 PM | Report abuse

Right, Lincoln only cared about the Union-- then why on July 6, 1852 (8 years before his election as President) did he say: "If as the friends of colonization hope, the present and coming generations of our countrymen shall by any means, succeed in freeing our land from the dangerous presence of slavery; and, at the same time, in restoring a captive people to their long-lost father-land, with bright prospects for the future; and this too, so gradually, that neither races nor individuals shall have suffered by the change, it will indeed be a glorious consummation."

Posted by: ReadNotDream | April 9, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Gov. McDonnell, I will welcome the moment in our history when the colors of our past fade enough to strengthen the body of our nation.

Our constitution protects the freedoms that have shaped our great republic. If history is to be remembered, remember it in full.

As black history month is allowed to be, so shall confederate history have it's month.

Gov. McDonnell is building in two arenas.
He gave confederate history a place of its own, and built another block of granite for its detractors to shout from.

It seems as if history is more often re-written than re-visited.

"To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury
Signifying nothing."

Macbeth (Act 5, Scene 5, lines 17-28)

Don't say what you're thinking.
Think what you're saying.

Posted by: Virginian63 | April 9, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

mister governor,,,,you should read a very nice book of Stephen crane THE RED BADGE OF COURAGE,,,he wrote it cause of the war that happened in your country against slavery, brothers against brothers,north against south,ones against slavery and others praising slavery,,these events mustn't be forgotten.you shall remember it forever.
that is why the states are loved, because they don t forget the past even if they are not proud of it.

Posted by: queenofsaba | April 9, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

carriet1: "it was the north Yankee nation that was the slavery and slave trade nation who forced the south to have slavery"

*Ahem* Note that it is southern states that keep trying to celebrate the slavery era -- the northern states do not.

Does carriet1 imply that McDonnell's proclamation is yet another plot by the northern states to make the south look bad?

Please...

Posted by: terry-the-censor | April 10, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

I am fairly certain that a large numbers of commenters have never bothered to actually read about the War between the States. The Southerners aren't celebrating the "Slavery" era. They are mourning the death of our constitution. The Southern states seceded because they were not fans of an engorged central government. They had every right to secede according to the Constitution. Lincoln trampled it in order to win that war. If the North were truly fighting for African freedom, Lincoln wouldn't have signed the death warrants for countless Native Americans during that same war. He wanted to ship all the Africans back to Africa. He didn't believe whites and blacks would ever meld together as a society. The Southerners were fighting for state's rights, which happened to include the issue of Slavery. I find it quite hypocritical for the Union to pat themselves on the back for their open-minded, accepting ways. At the turn of the century, Northerners were still refusing to hire the Irish, Italians, and many other races and creeds. I would like to know, if the South is so incredibly racist, why are the majority of African Americans still living there?

Posted by: elevatorshoe | April 12, 2010 5:41 PM | Report abuse

I am fairly certain that a large numbers of commenters have never bothered to actually read about the War between the States. The Southerners aren't celebrating the "Slavery" era. They are mourning the death of our constitution. The Southern states seceded because they were not fans of an engorged central government. They had every right to secede according to the Constitution. Lincoln trampled it in order to win that war. If the North were truly fighting for African freedom, Lincoln wouldn't have signed the death warrants for countless Native Americans during that same war. He wanted to ship all the Africans back to Africa. He didn't believe whites and blacks would ever meld together as a society. The Southerners were fighting for state's rights, which happened to include the issue of Slavery. I find it quite hypocritical for the Union to pat themselves on the back for their open-minded, accepting ways. At the turn of the century, Northerners were still refusing to hire the Irish, Italians, and many other races and creeds. I would like to know, if the South is so incredibly racist, why are the majority of African Americans still living there?

Posted by: elevatorshoe | April 12, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

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