“Nothing fills me with deeper sadness than to see a Southern man apologizing for the defense we made of our inheritance. Our cause was so just, so sacred, that had I known all that has come to pass, had I known what was to be inflicted upon me, all that my country was to suffer, all that our posterity was to endure, I would do it all over again.” — President Jeff Davis, C.S.A.
As for the Civil War, I don’t know of a Southern person today who would argue that slavery was ever right. It is certainly not my purpose in this entry to justify slavery in any case. I merely wish to speak just a bit about our Southern heritage.
However, it is important to understand that the civil war was not simply about slavery. The primary issue was a states rights of succession. The right of succession was placed into the American constitution.
And, believe it or not, the civil war also had to do with heritage and culture.
This is one reason that so many blacks and whites in the South today, resent the pictures that are being portrayed of our Southern culture. These sordid portrayals are made by people who do not understand the love that Southerners have for their culture. There are no racial lines when it comes to being Southern.
Actually people from the north do not yet understand why the South is so distinctively different from every other part of the nation. Yet Northerners by the droves are moving to the south, and it has nothing to do with the weather.
Something is drawing them. What is it?
Could it be because Southern women are prettier? (Don’t go there – I’m just kidding.)
Did you know:
(1) The first state to choose a black governor was Virginia, that is Doug Wilder in 1989.
(2) According to census, hundreds of thousands of blacks are leaving the North and coming South. Many are returning home and to a culture that they love and appreciate.
(3) Race relations in the south have always been better than those relationships in the north. Take note of where almost all the riots are seen. This should tell us who is really having a race problem.
Let me bring it a little closer to my home state of Louisiana.
Did you know:
(1) The word “Dixie” comes from currency issued by banks in Louisiana. The ten-dollar note was labeled “Dix,” French for the number ten. The notes came to be known as “Dixies” by the English speakers, and the area around the French parts of Louisiana came to be known as “Dixieland.”
(2) In my hometown, Pineville, Louisiana, we have a black mayor, and yet our population is predominately white. Across the river is Alexandria, Louisiana, with a white mayor, yet their population is predominately black. Does that suggest anything?
(3) Louisiana is also very unique in that we are pretty much the blending pot of the south. We are red, black, white, creole, Cajun, Spanish, German, red bone, and anything else you can throw into the mix, and we are downright proud of it.
What does that tell you about Southern race relations?
Why is the South so Distinctively Different
I would suggest that a primary reason the South is so distinctively different is because we are essentially a Bible loving people. Let no one fool you, there is a genuine Bible belt in the United States. That Bible belt is made up primarily of the old South.
The South is almost a nation within a nation.
How does being in the Bible belt affect the southern culture?
When it comes to respect for your elders, to general friendliness, to caring for your neighbor, to a love for family and tradition, to church attendance, we are all cut from the same clothe.
And by the way, who ever heard of Northern gospel music?By the way, did you know that Harriet Beecher Stowe, who wrote, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, had never been to the South and had never even seen a plantation and how they were run.
There is one Scripture that sets the stage for why the South is so distinct in our Christian heritage. Yes, it does come back to the Bible belt.
“For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise.” (Gal 3:27-29)
There is so much I would like to share about our southern heritage, but perhaps I should let some of our black brothers tell the story from their own view of the south. They can do it better than I can.
This first video clip is of a former NAACP president of Asheville, NC —
The next video is, “Behind the Dixie Stars”
In Christ always,