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Letter: Revolution, Civil War had different goals
Members of the Hall County Sheriff's Office form a barricade next to the Confederate monument Saturday in downtown Gainesville. - photo by David Barnes

The key difference between the Revolutionary war and the Civil War was the goal of each.

The Revolutionary War was about a general desire for freedom that did not seek to deny a major group of people their fundamental human rights.

This was clearly stated in the Declaration of Independence (“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”)

In contrast, the Confederacy fought to deny a large group of people those same basic human rights. Regardless of how sincere the South was, history has shown their cause to be misguided and ultimately immoral.

Confederate monuments should be in a museum, perhaps, but not on public display.

The party of Abraham Lincoln should not condone what Lincoln himself stood so firmly against, and ultimately died for.

Germany has no monuments to Hitler or Nazism. Swastikas and Nazi salutes are illegal there. The German people have no desire to preserve those ideas, regardless of how sincere so many Germans were at the time.

In like manner, any monuments or other symbols directly or indirectly supportive of slavery should be viewed through the same moral lens, and avoided like the plague.

The South can be proud of so many contributions to our great nation, but the Civil War is not one of them.

It’s time to acknowledge the moral blindness of our Southern ancestors, learn from their mistakes and remove the monuments which try to whitewash their darkness.

We can love the people of the Old South and pity their plight, but there is nothing about their civil rebellion to be proud of, or to memorialize.

Alan Shope


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