Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell received some push back for attempting to declare April “Confederate History Month,” recently. The action was disturbing to many African Americans, because celebrating the confederacy is tantamount to celebrating a government that clearly argued that black people were inferior and needed to be slaves.
Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour actually backed McDonnell recently by saying that slavery was “just a nit” and that the conversation about slavery “doesn’t amount to diddly.”
I am not sure how any elected official can presume that slavery, a holocaust as bad or worse than the one that occurred in Nazi Germany, was just a tiny little inconvenience in our nation’s past. By Barbour saying that the conversation on slavery “doesn’t amount to diddly,” it shows his ignorance and is a healthy reminder that the demons of racism still exist in America.
et’s be clear: The confederacy lasted only four years, and one of its fundamental reasons for existing was to maintain the institution of slavery. There is no other way to slice it, dice it or spin it. Read the rest of Dr. Watkins’ commentary on AOL Black Voices.