A Letter from an Alabamian

Dr. Fleming, 

I met you in North Charleston at the “Who Owns America” Abbeville Institute event.  I am writing you regarding something I briefly mentioned in conversation with you there, specifically on my newfound conviction to write, and George Wallace.  I respect your work, and your stand on the issues through decades, and I see that the SPLC mentions you as an antagonist on their website, so I know you are doing something right.  I am trying to catch up with decades of conservative writing, and what is currently being written.  I am honored to have met you, and consulting you on issues of Southern culture, and writing seems prudent in that I have only known the truth about the War of 1861 for about a year, and that you are with all do respect a giant in the field of all that is concerned.

Tonight, I heard Motown crooner Smokey Robinson speaking on a YouTube video about what it means to be black or more specifically a black American.  I listened and agreed with much of it.  Smokey’s statements on having pride in being American were good, the general talk about having pride in who you are and dropping the African American label made sense.  He even noted that Africans themselves would look at black Americans as outsiders.  The embracing of America as a place where your ancestors invested their lives, sweat, and tears, and looking forward as Americans to producing something better was very much there in what Robinson was saying.  However, something bothered me about his speech.  I know that this is sort of a random video, but that is the point.  It is sort of the usual thing you would hear concerning civil rights, and many who consider themselves conservatives may clap in praise of Smokey’s speech.  From here I will go into expounding on the typical narrative I believe I heard in his speech, as he did not actually bring up everything I am about to mention, and I read into his statements the popular narrative.

Smokey pointed to the Civil Rights movement as the coming together of an Americanism that blacks could and should embrace, and a unity among different races of Americans in that whites, and blacks died for the movement.  This is problematic for the Southerner in the way the civil rights unfolded politically and socially which seems to bring people to the conclusion that the Southerner was generally the racist to contend with while voting for the likes of the evil (or then evil) George Wallace.  George Wallace was voted by the racist people of Alabama into the Governor’s office three times, and his wife once.  The rhetoric of state’s rights only being a cover for white supremacy and segregation in the 1960’s much as it was for slavery in the 1860’s.  I suppose as the typical narrative would have it, Northerners were not as bad as Southerners, that is not as racist politically, however, they were almost as racist socially only helping their own agendas politically by supporting blacks against the Jim Crow South.  Southerners had to be taught how to be real or at least better Americans in the 1860’s and the 1960’s were another much needed lesson.  

What a lot of whites cannot or will not see is the fact that anything that was white and great is brought down by the white people being slave owners, privilege, or scenarios like Babe Ruth’s legendary status only being made possible by him not playing the best due to segregation.  In fact, Elvis was only big because of black men not getting a fair deal, and we could go on and on, but obviously this thinking makes everything great on the part of whites only possible due to the subjugation of blacks.  This makes the reality such that now all we can celebrate is black excellence because it is the only real, and inevitable excellence once subjugation by whites is out of the way.  We must all celebrate the zenith of black achievement because it is the only real or pure American achievement that we can take pride in.  This makes Martin Luther King the ultimate American hero, he mentioned by Smokey Robinson, and you can tell implicitly at least that King is bigger than the likes of George Wallace of course, Donald Trump probably, and even slave owning Americans George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, as Smokey mentioned “slave owners”.  One gets the notion from Smokey’s speech that it was an awesome thing that the words of the Declaration of Independence could be used politically, and he stated legally, however, these men were not the champions of today’s American principals, rather it was Martin Luther King Jr.

If this line of thinking and rearranging American thoughts on themselves and their history is not enough, there is evidence of outright lies about so called black inventions proved by googling said inventions and finding it reaffirmed by fraudulent or misleading articles, and statements.   The assault on history is astounding as western culture and its greatness are attacked.  It seems white/European peoples are being brought down many notches as the natural bearers of that civilization.  In fact any greatness western culture possesses is from other cultures outside of it or apparently oppressed by it, and it will only be purified by the acknowledgement and celebration of the greatness of blacks/Africans, Hispanics, Asians, so called gay people, etc.  Just as Southerners went through purifications of the Great War of 1861, and the Civil Rights movement, now all the west can be purified through the BLM movement as it is a worldwide movement.  Indeed all of our institutions and thinking can be purified much like the 1960’s counterculture did in it’s time, only today it will be purified by PRIDE, Oprah and John Shelby Spong’s rethinking spirituality and the Scriptures, and promotions of sexual purification like today’s sitcoms, the support of gay rights by Democrats and Republicans, and the likes of Jada Smith’s Red Table Talk.

As excruciating as the past several paragraphs above sound, it is the immoral, misleading, so called wisdom of today that we have to contend with, and it is the basis of unity in this culture, this counter culture replacing traditional western culture.  I have seen the results of this thinking with my own eyes many years, and from my childhood realizing that there was something wrong, but not being able to adequately frame, explain, or put my finger on the problems.  I remember sitting in Fourth Grade History time, only to feel somewhat disappointed in the portrayal of my people as slaveholders, klansmen, and then at least by middle school seeing them as segregationists without any broader context or understanding of the greatness of Southern culture; only that they were wrong and Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Jr. made things right.  Now we are to understand that Elvis Presley, even if unintentionally, stole from blacks, or his appropriation of their “blackness” as Oprah called it made him special.  Good thing that “black and proud” James Brown made the music world right.  It is a good thing we have black ministers and singers because they are truly worthy and spiritual, inheriting the oppression, yet victory of the Hebrew tradition on one hand, and correcting the errors and hate of white preachers on the other.  The world is a better place for the likes of minsters Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, and even Louis Farrakhan!  Obviously, I am being sarcastic, and I do not believe in this worldview or false history, and you get the point.

The type of worldview, anti-western culture, anti-white counterculture I have described above is the basis of unity in this culture.  Division is bad to this culture as the concept of discrimination seems to be bad to this culture, even though a man cannot make any good judgement or be decisive without discrimination.  To get to the point of explaining the erroneous thinking and immoral culture we have, I am writing you on why I thought it so important to mention the likes of former Alabama Governor George Wallace to you.  

Dr. Fleming, if Martin Luther King Jr. is considered The American Hero, and the civil rights movement viewed as the ultimate expression or spring board of everything good about America, as Smokey Robinson’s speech in the video seemed to suggest, and I see the typical narrative resulting in the antagonist Southerner (in some ways only a continuation of the antagonist Confederate) as problematic.  Then it is only logical that a reexamination of people like Southerner, three-time elected Governor George Wallace is considered, and written about in a different way to counter it.  George Wallace was right there in the time period, defended the people of Alabama, state’s rights, took pride in Dixie, all of this and his popularity throughout the states make him an obvious focal point.  Had he not been shot could he have won the presidency? 

I have googled, looked through Amazon.com, looked at Abbeville, it appears to me that although mentioned here and there, a true Southern counter punch is lacking in this area.  There is a sympathy sometimes expressed in various works, but no real point in Southern pride, or tradition made unless in is in exaltation of black liberation of some kind.  The closest one can find to getting any help was the book written by George Wallace Jr. that at least shows his father as a man and not the devil.  However, even George Wallace Jr’s book would not fill in the content of what is needed.  It seems to me that the truest of Southerners defend our people better in the 1860’s than in the 1960s, and for various reasons, not of least of which there is a better or truer culture that was untainted by Yankee control and damage prior to the 1860’s.  It is harder to defend a watered down, impoverished culture that was practiced by people trying to survive in conditions they did not create for themselves.  Unfortunately, by the 1960s Southerners had borrowed some of the ways of the oppressors to function and found means to survive in a Lincolnian America.

I have written you to search out if I am right about the need for writing in the arena of a defense of the Southern people in the 1960’s, if I have overlooked any needful or important writing, and if a scholar like yourself agrees with my understanding of the problem, and the need for the counter punch as I called it.  I have tried to keep this writing concise, but enough to explain myself adequately.  I am seeking advice, and willing to accept your criticism as reproof is necessary for any man.  I am grateful for your time.

Your fellow Southerner,

FF

FF

The Fleming Foundation

9 Responses

  1. Avatar Vince Cornell says:

    I’d also like to know about Gov. Wallace. I assumed he must be a good egg if only because he had all the right enemies (then and now). However, trying to explain anything about the pre-Civil Rights South to anyone now-a-days is practically impossible. Trying to frame the entire concept of Segregation within the historical and cultural context is too much for folks to listen to. It’s a “Those Southerners were the worst racists that ever lived because of Jim Crow, and I can’t believe you’re trying to defend them” response every time. EVERY time. I’ve pretty much given up trying to discuss this period of history with anyone who isn’t already aware of some parts of actual American history. Attempts to “open the eyes” of those still blind have to take a different path, at least in my personal experience.

  2. Avatar Clyde Wilson says:

    George Wallace won Democratic presidential primaries in the North before they shot him. H was the only candidate of recent times who effectively talked back to the media. He was eloquent and to the point, not a typical politician. His raising of the social questions was revolutionary and contributed greatly to Nixon and Reagan victories, although, of course, their adopting the rhetoric was entirely dishonest since they had no intention to implement it and never would have thought of it on their own. He anticipated the criticism of the Deep State by attacking the tax-free foundations manipulation of the political process and the pointy-headed intellectuals. The only real American statesman in the second half of the 20th century.

  3. Avatar theAlabamian says:

    Dr. Clyde Wilson, thank you for your response. I like how you put that he contributed to Nixon and Reagan victories, but neither Nixon or Reagan were serious about delivering as Wallace was. 1. You gave me a point of differentiation between the Southern Wallace and the so-called conservatives, big government Nixon and Reagan.
    2. The Wallace attack on “tax-free foundations” political corruption is something I must look into.
    3. You said “the only real American statesman…second half of 20th century”
    Dr. Wilson, thank you, sounds like points for a true Southern hero and not a villain of America. It gives me points to build on.

  4. Avatar Clyde Wilson says:

    I should not have said he was the ONLY real stateman. There were also Richard Russell and Sam Ervin.

  5. Avatar theAlabamian says:

    Point taken Dr. Wilson, I should probably look into Russell and Ervin as I don’t know who they are.
    Thank you

  6. Avatar Gregory Fogg says:

    I was an avid Wallace supporter in ’68. too young to vote, I unsuccessfully tried to convince my yeller dog democrat to switch. Of course, when push comes to shove, in some ways GCW was a New Deal liberal ( I guess this could justify the old Lipset/Raab classification system), I remember a network news segment during GCW’s last gubernatorial campaign when a network reporter asked a colored voter why he was supporting GCW despite his segrgationist reputation. His reply was “A h, hell, that was just politics.

  7. Avatar Gregory Fogg says:

    Edited version. I was an avid Wallace supporter in ’68. Too young to vote,{ I unsuccessfully tried to convince my yeller dog democrat parents to switch to the flower of the Confederacy. Of course, when push comes to shove, in some ways GCW was a New Deal liberal. (I guess this could justify the old Lipset/Raab classification system. I remember during GCW’s last gubernatorial campaign when a network reporter asked a colored voter why he was supporting GCW despite his segregationist reputation. His reply was “Ah hell, that was just politics”.

  8. Avatar Clyde Wilson says:

    The National Review and Nixon crowd accused Wallace of supporting social welfare measures—but of course almost every Republican office holder did the same

  9. Avatar Gregory Fogg says:

    Touche Dr. Wilson. I also supported Wallace in ’72, when I COULD vote. but Arthur Bremer robbed me of my chance to vote for him.