So then they came for Thomas Jefferson, although at least this time the authorities had the tiniest bit of backbone. The SJW cultists were not happy. For example:
Yes, Thomas Jefferson owned slaves and slavery is very wrong. Let's tear down his statue... along with the Roman Coliseum, the Egyptian pyramids, the Mayan pyramids, the Great Wall of China and every other structure built by slaves as well as every statue of an ancient emperor or Medieval King or early modern leader who owned slaves or was a master of serfs or whatever.
Modern day figures you say? Well Winston Churchill was racist. How about anti-racists? Well, have you heard what Ghandi said about black people? How about antiracist blacks? Well, Martin Luther King Jr. was plagiarist and serial philanderer (and maybe worse).
People are flawed. History is ugly. What a revelation.
But even still, our history provides a glue to our civilization. It tells us who we were and where we came from and gives us all (including immigrants) a common history. Yes, if you have a truly evil man, like statues of Stalin in Eastern Europe after the fall of the Soviet Union, you should remove his statue. (The ongoing trainwreck in CHAZ seems to be further evidence you need something more than "solidarity" to hold a society together, even one that consists of only six square blocks.)
But Thomas Jefferson moved things forward, not backwards. He owned slaves, but at a time when slavery was often taken for granted, he wrote openly against and took steps to try and curtail it. And he was instrumental in moving the world from monarchy to republicanism. (And by the way, the "father of Sally Hemming's children" thing is a lie.)
Indeed, even with Confederates, tearing down their statues makes little sense. They are honored for their bravery and fighting for what they perceived to be their country, not for defending slavery. Again, history is ugly and slavery was par for the course around the world.
The great Civil War historian Shelby Foote puts it well in my mind about "the great compromise after the war,"
And there's a great compromise as it's called it consists of southerners admitting freely that it's probably best that the Union wasn't divided [and that slavery ended, of course] and the North admits rather freely that the South fought bravely for a cause and which had believed and that is a great compromise and we live with
This is unacceptable to the SJW culture warriors of BLM and Antifa though. No, just complete, total capitulation is acceptable. The past must be erased.
This draws parrellels not just to the Taliban and ISIS, who love to destroy statues and erase what came before because of it's heretical, errr, I mean racist. What most comes to mind would be the Jacobins.
During the French Revolution, the Jacobins throughout the old calendar and started over at Year One. Dissent was crushed and the "Reign of Terror" began that killed tens of thousands. During this "enlightenment," the Jacobins went so far as to behead statues. Sounds very rational... yet also familiar.
Or perhaps they sound more like the Khmer Rouge, whose leader Pol Pot called for an even more radical break from the past; going so far as to evacuate the cities. As I've noted earlier,
A French Catholic priest named Francois Ponchaud who lived in Cambodia during the 1970’s analogized the French Revolution’s call for breaking with the past to the Khmer Rouge. His book Year Zero catalogs the gruesome atrocities of that genocidal regime. Pol Pot and his henchman targeted any businessmen and landowner as well as monks, intellectuals, artists and teachers. They evacuated the cities and purged any traditional influence they could find. The idea was to destroy and replace all of Cambodia’s culture and tradition with a new “revolutionary culture.”
The Khmer Rouge killed approximately 2 million Cambodians.
There's nothing enlightened or progressive about rushing to tear down statues and monuments and let's be honest, erase history. When the activity you are engaged in is most reminiscent of Jacobins, communists and Jihadists, it's probably a good idea to just go ahead and stop.
"Every day is a new life to the wise man."
The Righteous Mind
Star Slate Codex
Consulting by RPM