Happenings in the Land of the Tarheels

by Fred Ray on August 18, 2017 · 1 comment

I mentioned earlier that a group of vandals had pulled down a statue of a Confederate soldier in Durham. The good news is that the local sheriff has taken it seriously, arresting one woman a few days ago. Yesterday more people turned themselves in to face felony charges, bringing the total to eight. They of course can’t see anything wrong with what they did.

I hope the prosecutor sticks with this and does not dismiss the charges or give them a slap on the wrist. The only way this is going to stop is to stand up to the mob. The idea behind civil disobedience is to disobey and be prepared to take the consequences. Today’s social justice crusaders expect to be let off scot free, but if they have to do some actual jail time maybe the next group will think twice.

Just to add more fuel to the fire, several re-enactors were pepper sprayed while marching in a parade in Newton by a bystander who did not like what they were doing. One man was arrested and two re-enactors treated for the effects of the spray.

Governor Roy Cooper is now in full surrender mode about the statues, calling for all Confederate memorials in the state to be removed. His rationale is that it’s his job to “protect North Carolinians and keep them safe.”

Wouldn’t it be better to actually enforce the law rather than appease the mob, governor? You will have to face them eventually on some issue. To give a bit of background here, Cooper is a Democrat (a rare bird indeed at state level) who won by a razor-thin margin. He depends heavily on the African-American vote, and this presents a dilemma.

Since the state has gone heavily Republican (after a century on one-party Democratic rule) it’s unlikely that the legislature will go along with it, and NC has a state law preempting localities from removing historical monuments on their own, which Cooper wants repealed.

NC Senate leader Phil Berger (a Republican) has criticized the governor’s remarks, calling them “reactionary and divisive.” He added:

I don’t have a lot of answers about what we can do to heal the wounds of racial injustice that still exist in our state and country. But I know it won’t happen with angry mobs. It won’t happen with opportunistic politicians trying to drive a wedge further between us. It will require our leaders to show some humility and compassion as we try to chart a path forward.

Here in Asheville four people have been arrested for damaging a plaque put up in 1926 commemorating General Lee. Fortunately they were pretty inept and succeeded only in damaging it. The plaque is near the Vance Monument, an obelisk that towers over downtown and is the usual gathering point for rallies and demonstrations of all kinds. Vance was the Civil War governor of North Carolina, a Confederate officer, and a slaveholder. Out mayor, Esther Mannheimer, wants to “reconceptualize” it and your guess is as good as mine as to what that might mean.

So far polls both at the state and national level are running heavily in favor of leaving the memorials up—a solid 62% favor keeping Confederate monuments, as opposed to to about 37% who want them taken down. This includes a surprising plurality of 42% of African Americans.

UPDATE: The Durham Country District Attorney, Roger Echols, has weighed in on the Durham vandalism case with what I regard as a wink and a nod. He says he has to consider “pain of recent events in Charlottesville, and the pain in Durham and the nation,” and that the citizens in that city have “no proper recourse for asking our local government to remove or relocate this monument,” which sounds like a license to take the law into their own hands. Of course they do have a recourse and that’s to petition the legislature to change state law prohibiting removal of historical monuments.

Expect then that if the charges are not actually dropped that the defendants will get at most a slap on the wrist, which will mean open season on other monuments and who knows what else. This follows a disturbing trend heretofore seen on college campuses, that rather than stand up to the radicals and enforce the law the authorities will simply roll over. It won’t surprise me if the same thing happens here in Asheville.

And by the way I apologize for taking so much space to cover this, believe me I’d much rather be writing about the sharpshooters. But if no one stands up to them they will do what they like.


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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

David Corbett August 22, 2017 at 7:53 am

Thanks for the article; the barbarians are inside the gates !

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