Robert E. Lee - Gallant soldier, true Christian, and true American patriot
Robert E. Lee - Gallant soldier, true Christian, and true American patriot

Advancing Neo-Marxism and Identity Politics by Erasing Southern Heritage

Virginia Democrat Governor Ralph Northam is pushing a bill in the Virginia Legislature to replace Robert E. Lee’s statue in the U.S. Capitol. Each state has two statues in the National Statuary Hall Collection. Virginia’s two statues are of George Washington and Robert E. Lee.

In December, Two Virginia U.S. House Representatives, Jennifer Wexton and Donald McEachin, added momentum to replacing Lee’s statue in the Statuary Hall:

“As Virginians we have a responsibility not only to learn from but also confront our history. As part of this responsibility, we must strive for more complete telling of history by raising up the voices, stories, and memories of minorities and people of color.”  

In a press release, Wexton revealed her limited knowledge of Civil War issues and distorted belief in a common false narrative on the Civil War—that it was all about slavery, and there were no significant Northern political and economic abuses of power.

“Virginia’s decision to donate the statue of Lee was a part of a national effort to rewrite the history of the South’s secession and recalibrate the image of Confederate leaders.”

Rep. Wexton’s views on the Civil War are widely held but largely false. Correcting them point by point is not in the scope this article, but I offer my book as a beginning reference:

The Un-Civil War: Shattering the Historical Myths, Leonard M. Scruggs, published by Universal Media in 2011. Many politicians who hold her view, however, are far more interested in political advancement than facts, truth, and logic.

In February 2019, it was revealed that Governor Northam’s photo in blackface appeared in his medical school annual. Northam came under furious hysterical attack, and there were calls for his resignation. I am against giving exaggerated gravity to college antics many years past, and I am glad he did not resign on that basis, even though I am strongly against his positions on abortion, gun-control, and much else, now including his proposed legislation for removal of General Lee’s statue in the Statutory Hall in Washington. In so doing, he appears obsequiously politically correct.

Obsequious political correctness, however, is only the tip of the iceberg in Northam’s and the Virginia Legislature’s increasing embrace of Neo-Marxist politics. The areas of Virginia close to the centers for Federal Government have undergone tremendous demographic change. This change is not only from recent foreign immigrants most of whom have little interest or appreciation for Virginia’s history and culture, but also from hundreds of thousands of domestic immigrants, too many of whom have a version of the American dream that is to live off and manage an ever larger more powerful and controlling progressive federal government.

These changes in demography have not gone unnoticed by those whose ambition is fundamental Neo-Marxist transformation of America. This includes powerful media, educational, and financial interests. Going into the November 2019 elections the Republicans held a narrow 51 to 49 lead in the House of Delegates and a 20 to 19 lead in the Senate. It was by far the most expensive legislative election ever in Virginia with $82 million spent. Huge Leftist Super PACs and wealthy leftist donors dominated the media campaign. Outside money dominated the Virginia election. Three American billionaires—George Soros, Tom Steyer, and Michael Bloomberg threw immense and often decisive funds into electing progressive Democrats. When the smoke cleared the Democrats and their dominating out-of-state donors and Super PACs had won the day, not only was Virginia Democrat but radical. The Democrats took both legislative houses, dominating the House of Delegates 55 to 45 and the Senate 21 to 19. The vast expanse of Virginia’s geography is still politically conservative, but the huge left-leaning majorities concentrated in the urban East have reached the point of cancelling Old Virginia in statewide elections—unless people wake up. .    

Hence we are seeing Virginia gubernatorial and legislative attacks on the U.S. Second Amendment, the sanctity of life, Virginia history, and one of its most revered sons, Robert E. Lee. The Left’s ambitions are also not likely to retain George Washington as a revered son. 

Look for similar Neo-Marxist radical financial and media blitzkriegs in North Carolina, Georgia, Texas, and Florida in 2020. 

The man Virginia and Washington Democrats are willing to throw under a dusty blanket marked for obscurity, clueless misunderstanding, and even derision is one of the most revered generals not only of American history but world history. Yet in the South and elsewhere, he is more, for he is revered for his thoroughly Christian character.

Following Lee’s death at his home in Lexington, Virginia, on October 12, 1870, former Confederate President Jefferson Davis gave a moving eulogy honoring Lee at a Memorial meeting in Richmond on November 3. This was probably the largest gathering of Confederate generals and officers since the end of the war. In the course of his speech, he gave this praise of Lee:

“This good citizen, this gallant soldier, this great general, this true patriot, had yet a higher praise than this or these; he was a true Christian.”

I am fully aware that most of those who would remove Robert E. Lee from honor and history would also be pleased to see genuine Christianity erased as well. But it would be to their benefit and the benefit of all that they opened their minds and hearts enough to see his character.  

While Lee was Superintendent at West Point from 1852 to 1855, the Cadet Corps was only about 200, and he took a personal interest in every cadet, especially those who struggled with the strenuous academic and strict military discipline of the school. Lee had high standards, but his style was not to push, drive, or threaten. According to his most celebrated biographer, Douglas Southall Freeman,

“He carried them [the cadets] on his heart, and spent many an anxious hour debating how he could best train them to be servants of their country by making them masters of themselves.”

 Later as Commander of the Army of Northern Virginia and General-in-Chief of the Confederate Armies, one of the reasons for Lee’s spectacular success in motivating Confederate soldiers, who were often badly outnumbered, out-gunned, and coping with inadequate supplies and clothing, was that they knew his orders were not given to gain himself promotion, praise, or personal glory. He had the highest standards of duty and honor and that included responsibilities to his troops as well as cause and country. 

 Responding to public praise for his stunning military victories, Lee said:

“I tremble for my country when I hear of confidence expressed in me.  I know too well my weakness, that our only hope is in God.”

 On discipline Lee remarked,

“A true man of honor feels humbled himself when he cannot help humbling others.”

 When told that his chaplains were praying for him daily Lee responded:

“I can only say that I am nothing but a poor sinner, trusting in Christ alone for salvation.”

 A Confederate officer recollected:

“His soldiers reverenced him and had unbounded confidence in him, for he shared all their privations.”

 A private in the Army of Northern Virginia recollected:

“It was remarkable what confidence the men reposed in General Lee; they were ready to follow him wherever he might lead, or order them to go.”

John Brown Gordon, Confederate Lieutenant General and later Governor of Georgia and U.S. Senator, said this about Lee:

 “Intellectually, he was cast in a giant mold. Naturally he was possessed of strong passions. He loved the excitement of war. He loved grandeur. But all these appetites and powers were brought under the control of his judgment and made subservient to his Christian faith. This made him habitually unselfish and ever willing to sacrifice on the altar of duty and in the service of his fellows…He is an epistle, written of God and designed by God to teach the people of this country that earthly success is not the criterion of merit, not the measure of true greatness.”        

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