Monday, September 6, 2010

My New Response To Nonsense

Yes, it is 2010, but yet--far too many times--my colleagues and I at the Park are given little history lessons by those who say, "You know, slavery had nothing to do with the Civil War." I would say that in addition to your typical McClellan or Burnside bashing, this is one of the most oft-repeated lines we hear. Being patient, faithful public servants, we always hear them out, usually giving the obligatory head-nod and hoping the conversation will end at that. Every now and then, though, they seek our input. Playing along, since there is usually no use in trying to reason logically, I will say, "Well, that might be the wrong question. Instead, had there been no such institution as slavery, do you think there still should would have been a Civil War?" If they answer in the affirmative, I think from now on, I will then respond with, "Well, there hasn't been slavery in this country for nearly 150 years, and we have had no civil wars during this time."
Just a thought.

2 comments:

Andy Hall said...

"Being patient, faithful public servants, we always hear them out, usually giving the obligatory head-nod and hoping the conversation will end at that."

Sorry to say, I think many of those folks would take that as an affirmation of their position. I don't know how to deal with that situation in an appropriate way that both makes the point and doesn't come across as unduly snarky or aggressive.

On the other hand, I'm also sure that most of the time when folks make such an assertion, they've not really trying to convince the listener as much as they are themselves.

John David Hoptak said...

Andy~

So very, very true.