Arggg…Everything has died on me today. I started decorating my web page for advent, but my camera battery died so I had to borrow an image from the web. Then while replying to people's comments the Internet died including for the guy who lives close by. Sometimes I steal his if ours is being finicky. I give up. So now I'm typing up a new post on the computer until the Internet is up and running again.
I hope that everyone had a great Thanksgiving. I'm sure everyone is stuffed and that all the hubbies enjoyed the football games. My hubby is not a football enthusiast but he reads my blog and thought that this article might be interesting to me.
I'll summarize. Basically, Ole Miss, a college from my home state, traditionally has the marching band play a medley of Dixie Land music at football games. At the end, the marching band members shout "The South Shall Rise Again." This has been going on for about 20 years. Until one of the higher ups decided that the tradition promoted segregation. He banned the practice from further football games. The KKK (yes the Klu Klux Klan those good ol' boys in sheets) was planning to protest the next football game because they felt that the ban violates the freedom of speech. In a press release, they said that the ban "attacks our Southern heritage and culture." The KKK also said "This is a direct violation of the right to freedom of speech and will only continue because a handful of people at Ole Miss want to force change on the University of Mississippi that destroy the culture and heritage on the Ole Miss campus…Ole Miss should embrace its Southern heritage and culture and reject the liberal Communist revolution that is taking place."
A few thoughts: What does the phrase "The South Shall Rise Again" mean? I'm from there so I think it means that the South shall come out of the ashes of the Civil War and once again be prosperous. The South was prosperous on the back of slavery. It still is a largely farming community, but it is not comprised of landowner with slaves. It's mostly corporations with hired hands. So has the South risen? I think so. It's a poor area, but there are poor areas besides the South. I would say that Mississippi takes care of its people better than a lot of other states. So why say the phrase? Is it meant to be a throw back to slavery? It certainly seems that way. Or is it a throw back to secession? It could be that too. Either way I don't think the South will want to secede or own slaves again. The phrase is just part of archaic tradition. We should move beyond our obsessions with the Civil War and focus on other parts of our heritage. Mississippi was around long before slavery and has outlasted the practice.
The KKK is protesting because it says banning the practice is a violation of freedom of speech. I think that the Amendment protects the rights of the individual not the rights of the collected party. Otherwise your boss could come up to you and tell you something offensive and say "freedom of speech." Since the Ole Miss Marching Band is a collective group representing the student body of the University of Mississippi, I don't believe they have the right to decide whether to say the phrase or not. This, I believe, is up to the student body and the authorities at Ole Miss. That being said, if a student from the University of Mississippi wishes to say the phrase, then that I think is protected free speech. So the KKK, in my opinion, is stretching the limits of free speech.
Also I take offense to the fact that the KKK dictates what is the Southern culture and heritage of Mississippi. Mr. Shane Tate, great titan of KKK, you are only interested in promoting one part of Southern culture and heritage. That being the white, Protestant part. Mississippi's population is made up of nearly half minority groups. Black people have a different heritage. Native American people have a different heritage. And other types of white people have a heritage. You cannot say that Ole Miss is destroying its heritage. The utterance of that phrase has no relevant meaning to those of different heritages who are also Southern. So it's not "an attack on Southern heritage." You're being delusional if you think the KKK is protecting our Southern heritage. The KKK's true agenda is to destroy other people's heritage and destroying diversity in general.
Also I find it funny that they refer to the ban as being a part of a "liberalist Communist revolution." Again to Mr. Shane Tate, we live in a democracy. Do you even know what Communism is? It has nothing to do with race or culture. Communism is an economic system designed to help promote the worker. It makes everyone equal who works. That means that those poor good ol' boys sweating in the fields would earn the same wage as the black doctor down the street. I believe that this is something that your agenda is after. If anything you're promoting a form of Communism, where one small elite group (white Protestant men) rule over others. A form of socialism if you will. You have to allow and make room for diversity of ideas and cultures in order to live in a democracy. You seem to want to embrace democracy, but it is you who is the Communist/Socialist. It is you who wants a "liberalist Communist revolution." The only reason why the KKK uses that phrase is to promote fear. But I'm not afraid.
Anyway for the normal people out there, racism is rampant. It is everywhere. Open your eyes and look inside yourself. Ignoring the problem will not make it go away. The Catholic church focuses so much attention to the poor and unborn (which is good), but where is the focus on the rampant amount of racism? I say if you want to stand up for an issue pick one that very few people are willing to tackle within the Church. Some good ones are health care reform, racism, pacifism, and the environment. I'm sure that you can think of a few things that irritate you. We need to spread peace all around.