An American Taliban math problem
The former masters of Afghanistan, the Taliban, sported a lengthy list of crimes long before they allowed al Qaeda to plot Sept. 11 attacks against the United States.
They permitted and encouraged abuse of women. They denied political dissent and persecuted members of other faiths. The Taliban also attempted to take an eraser to pieces of history inconvenient to their doctrine.
Countless statues and relics of bygone civilizations were blasted and destroyed by Taliban zealots attempting to prove their religious piety.
While the US quite rightly condemned these acts, a group with similarly warped values has sprung up in this country in recent days.
The scene reminds me of Claude Rains in “Casablanca” standing in Rick’s and shouting, “I am shocked, shocked to discover there was slavery in the Confederacy.”
Members of this US Taliban want to topple monuments for Confederate soldiers and leaders throughout the South, attempting to erase what they perceive as symbols of oppression. Certainly, an element of truth hides in what these statue-levelers claims. But it’s not the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
The Confederacy did permit and facilitate slavery of African Americans. Slavery was a key cause of the Civil War. Supporters erected these monuments following reconstruction, partly as an act of stubborn defiance and a reaffirmation of white superiority.
It is also true, however…
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