Virginia’s contentious Governor Robert F. McDonnell has once again stirred up controversy in his Web site proclamation calling April “Confederate History Month” in Our Commonwealth. This (unsurprisingly) reverses the decision of the previous two administrations, both of which were Democratic, not to declare the month a symbol for all the “The South Shall Rise Again!” fringe cases—people who, I can assure my gentle readers, are not in the closet here on the edge of purportedly-Liberal Northern Virginia.
What galls even more than the fact that McDonnell is playing to the separatists is that he’s also playing to the racists by conveniently forgetting that slavery was a big part of the reason the people of Virginia and other southern states decided to break away from the Union. It would take inferences of astonishing breadth to find any evidence that McDonnell thought anything about slavery in his proclamation, and in case anyone did want to undertake the gyrations, he decided to short-circuit the need in an interview with the Washington Post:
McDonnell said Tuesday that the move was designed to promote tourism in the state, which next year will mark the 150th anniversary of the start of the war. McDonnell said he did not include a reference to slavery because “there were any number of aspects to that conflict between the states. Obviously, it involved slavery. It involved other issues. But I focused on the ones I thought were most significant for Virginia.”
Ah, yes. Slavery wasn’t significant to Virginia. That’s why it’s not part of the proclamation. This should come as no surprise from an administration that sits solidly in the far right wing of the Right Wing here in America, but it should still evoke disgust and opposition.
And to think we still have several more years of these people to live through…
So, it looks like the governor realized that his little proclamation is too clearly demonstrating his positions. According to the TPM blog, he’s ‘corrected’ the proclamation and rediscovered that slavery was important to the Civil War.