During the ongoing debate regarding the removal of the monuments honoring Confederate Generals, those in support of the statues often say in defense, “The statues are part of America’s history; we need to learn from history.”
While this statement is of course true, I do not believe it is appropriate in this context, as “learning from history” is synonymous with “learning from our mistakes.” A more accurate (though accidental) translation would be, “We need to keep Robert E Lee’s statues up because he was a bigot who fought to keep Blacks enslaved… and we need to learn from our mistakes.”
General Lee’s life was not a “mistake to learn from.” The lives of the vast majority of the Confederate Generals were not a “mistake to learn from.” The statues commemorating their lives are a positive thing.
Why would I make such a claim?
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