COLUMN FIFTY-TWO, OCTOBER 1, 2000
(Copyright © 2000 Al Aronowitz)
THE SLAVEMASTERS' BLOODY BANNER MUST BE PULLED DOWN NOW!
(Photo by Myles Aronowitz)
A few years ago
U&S published an article entitled
Tear Down The Confederate Flag. First of all, it is not the state flag, but a confederate
battle flag used in the Civil War. It is a flag that represents the armed
attempt to maintain chattel slavery in the United States. It has never
represented Anything else!
The swine, Johnson, betrayed his own class of poor whites, who presumed he was to end their peonage, poverty, social degradation. Instead, Johnson, by blocking the redistribution of the great plantations of the south, the "40 acres & a mule," deprive both the ex-slaves and the poor southern whites, who were also held down to near slavery by the chattel slavery plantation system, of land and the chance to become small landowners as in the bourgeois revolutions in Europe. So that both the Black ex-slaves and poor whites were forced into the hated Sharecropper system, a neo-feudal serfdom, tying the masses of the population who worked the land to the vicious super exploitation of the big landlords and banks through usury, fraud, denial of rights and education and outright theft.
LINCOLN WANTED CONFEDERATE
STATES TO RE-SWEAR
ALLEGIANCE TO U.S
Johnson became an outright tool of the new owners of the south, the rising
Wall St. monopoly capitalists, allowing the Confederate states to re-enter the Union without the
re-swearing of allegiance to the
Federal government, which Lincoln had insisted upon. These are the conditions
for the Confederate Battle Flag being allowed to remain, to signify the betrayal
of Black People and poor southern whites, enforced "legally" by the so
called "Black Codes" that themselves were unconstitutional because
they violated the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments to the Constitution.
This re-imposition of racial neo-slavery on the south was called by this
empowered southern bourgeois
and petty bourgeois Comprador US proto-Nazi class, "The Redemption of The
South". It is a bitter irony
that these "Black Codes" were the models for Hitler's later racial
anti-Jewish laws. The Ku Klux Klan enforced this proto-fascist system with
continuous murder, violence and intimidation. The Klans were the models for the
Nazi storm troopers. (See The
Economics of Barbarism, Kucynski and Witt.)
Just imagine if some crypto-neo-Nazis in local or national government
tried to fly the Nazi flag over U.S. government buildings. But who knows? Buchanan, behind his last pro-Nazi book, might just try!
Emancipation Proclamation states clearly that as of Jan 1, 1863 the only
relationship the ex-slaves have is to the federal government, not to the
Confederate states (which the flying of the battle flag of the Confederacy
screams they still do!). This is why in the Civil Rights movement the Federal
government again and again had to intervene to obtain any justice for Black
people. The Rodney King case in LA a few years ago once again confirmed the
continued and critical importance of this relationship; the police who had
beaten King and who were shown on videotape doing it every hour were still
acquitted. So, once again, the
federal government had to intervene. This will probably happen once more in the
Amadou Diallo case, which was moved to Albany to enable the cops to escape
McCain saying "leave it to the state" of South Carolina raises once
more the continuous attempt, not only by openly racist elements, but by the
Republicans and many Democrats alike (including Bill Clinton, viz. his Welfare
bill, for instance) to impose so-called "STATES RIGHTS" in the same
fashion, but with different rhetoric, as Governor Wallace of Alabama or Ross
Barnett of Mississippi or the infamous White Citizens Councils, during the Civil
presidential candidates must speak on this issue and call clearly for the
removal of this hated symbol of slavery. Particularly, Al Gore if he wants to be
a champion of the oppressed and an enemy of racism and of all forms of racial,
i.e., national oppression. They
must shout a loud and resonant "TEAR IT DOWN!” if the great majority of
democratic minded people is to have any faith in them.
should lead a class action suit, based on violation of the 13th, 14th and 15th
amendments, passed by congress as the legal enforcement for the Emancipation
Proclamation. If the flag of an
armed enemy of the U.S. is allowed to fly over government buildings, then it
implies that slavery, or at least the threat of slavery, is sanctioned by that
government and can still legally exist.
In the last sense, this open intimidation by forces long ago ruled enemies of the United States so forcefully counter the laws and the Constitution of the country. That they would make war on the United States and its people is not only in essence an act of Sedition, but also an assault by intimidation and a form of "fighting words!"
The flying of
the Confederate flag, which openly opposes the equality before the law called
for by the 14th amendment, makes the act of SELF-DEFENSE (which Lincoln urged
the newly freed slaves to do to protect their freedom) completely Legal.
historic fact of Chattel Slavery, makes the Confederate Flag an object of Mental
Anxiety, certainly for Black People, and as such is a form of unlawful assault,
the same as "Nigger" is one term generally construed
to fit within the definition of "Fighting Words."
Provocation that makes Self-Defense constitutionally within a citizen's
rights. (Certainly, we must begin by demanding that any of the programs in the
public media eliminate portrayal of the Confederate Flag as some vapid comic
object, such as in The Dukes of Hazzard &c!)
controversy also opens the door for a campaign by the Afro-American people as
well as all those historically affected in "The Black Belt" by Chattel
Slavery, e.g., poor whites, the native peoples and other affected and democratic
minded persons, for REPARATIONS. The assault on the Confederate Flag should be
the opening bombardment for this clearly Revolutionary Democratic campaign.
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THE BLACKLISTED JOURNALIST IS A SERVICE MARK OF AL ARONOWITZ