As someone who came to the Southern Conservative tradition late this moment feels very strange. I have inculcated affection for the South my whole life without living there very often, or even knowing it was the South that I was pledging allegiance to. But it keeps turning out that everything I value, everything I believe, is deeply Southern. Yet my affection comes at a distance. I call myself a Southern Conservative because I don’t think Conservativism can be dislocated, there is no general form of Conservatism. It always needs description. And yet for someone who describes himself as Southern I have not been located very often within the South.
As the monuments come down I see the obvious folly but do not feel much in the way of sadness or anger. It is easy to be angry at cowards like Rich Lowry who have made a career out of compromise with the American left and consistently betrayed Conservatism. It only takes reading a little bit of the incomparable Paul Gottfried to understand just how distorted “movement Conservatism” has always been. The NeoCons and “Capitalists” really took over in the mid twentieth century and National Review rarely looked back. Russel Kirk was spilling ink over their Straussian heads the whole time.
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