Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Even though my last name is 100% Irish, it’s my married (now divorced) last name. I love to claim it on St. Patrick’s Day! Isn’t everyone a little bit Irish on this glorious day?
Yesterday I went to our neighborhood parade for the “warm up parade” before the big, Kansas City St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Even though we were FREEZING, it was great fun. There was lots of candy, dogs dressed up with shamrocks, Irish dancers and the Confederate flag.
Yep..the Confederate Flag often seen in most St. Patrick’s Day parades.
Strike that – only seen in this Kansas City parade.
It was carried by some Civil War reenactors and it was plastered on an old car.
Just as I could say, “What the?” it passed by me.
Like any good history major, I came home and did some research. Who were these people marching in the St. Patrick’s Day parade? They are from the Thomas J. Key Camp, also known as the Kansas Sons of the Confederate Veterans.
Now, I did some research about the role the Irish had in the Civil War. There is an excellent article explaining the sacrifices made by Irish soldiers. 150,000 Irish fought for the Union and 40,000 fought for the Confederacy. Read more here.
I don’t know if the KSSCV (I’ll abbreviate from now on) was attempting to show how instrumental the Irish were in the Civil War by marching in the parade. One thing I do know is nothing draws an emotional reaction as marching with a Confederate flag.
A little more about the Sons of Confederate Veterans General Headquarters Website:
“The citizen-soldiers who fought for the Confederacy personified the best qualities of America. The preservation of liberty and freedom was the motivating factor in the South’s decision to fight the Second American Revolution. The tenacity with which Confederate soldiers fought underscored their belief in the rights guaranteed by the Constitution. These attributes are the underpinning of our democratic society and represent the foundation on which this nation was built.”
Best qualities? 2nd revolution?
A little bit about KSSCV’s popularity from previous parades.
“I believe this year we received more applause than in any of the previous nine times we have been in the parade and more good comments yelled at us.”
I can only imagine what has been “yelled” at them.
So who are the KSSCV? One thing tripped me up was their name “Kansas”. I wasn’t aware that Kansas was on the Confederate side. I’m sure that Kansas had some dudes that crossed the border and fought on the Confederate side, but if you are wondering why membership hasn’t blossomed, that might be why. Maybe a name change to Missouri Sons of Confederate Veterans might gain you a few more members?
I guess advice isn’t appreciated unless asked for.
Anyway, more about the website. So the members love the Confederate flag. There isn’t a southern capitol they don’t want to drape the flag over. Another thing they love…secession. Then and now it turns out.
A link on their website says “Be Patriotic, Become a Secessionist“. If you want to read this gem go for it, but in an effort to keep you awake, I’ll highlight the most interesting part.
“The America “union” ceased being a union of the people of the free and independent states in 1865. Today the “union” simply means the political plundering class in Washington, D.C., with all off its welfare/warfare state parasites, lobbyists, and propagandists in the media and academe. That is what one would be leaving behind by seceding. So be patriotic and become a secessionist.”
Welfare recipients are parasites? KSSCV – I’ve been reading a lot of stuff about your national chapter saying you are working hard to try not to appear racist – mostly from the Southern Poverty Law Center. You can say it isn’t racist, but more of a poverty argument. Call yourselves what you want, but I’ll go ahead and say that calling anyone a “parasite” is disgusting and I would say point for you in the racist/elitist category. I’ll let you choose.
I hope those reading this will take the “time” to read this interesting piece from Time Magazine that explains Sons of Confederate Veterans may love honoring Confederate Veterans, but gloss right over that little issue of slavery. http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,2055981,00.html
KSSCV – The good news is I’m not male and I don’t have ancestors that fought in the Civil War so need to worry about me trying to gain membership. The better news is my friends at the Southern Poverty Law Center have an eye on you. We can just agree to disagree.
I do have outstanding issues with the organizers of my local St. Patrick’s Day parade. Come on guys. What were you thinking? I’m sure there are more people willing to color their hair green and hand out candy to kids. Do your homework a little better.
Unless you want to have this group hand out a flier explaining what the Confederate flag has to do with beer drinking, leprechauns and good old family fun – let’s leave the mostly racist symbolism out of next year’s parade.