The independent news organization of Duke University

History vital to understanding South's violations

Whether to impress a Duke professor, administrator or to simply rouse rabble, Nick Christie has embraced a base and biased argument in condemning Southern birth. As one who surely champions the equality of all men, he should first remember that no man chooses his birthplace.

He should review American history, and not just Southern history, in his condemnation of violations of human rights. The South is an easy target because the instances of its bigotry are racially based and therefore black and white in more ways than one.

The photographs he cites may all come from the South and are shown today as examples of racial oppression, but at the same time, as they were photographed, groups all over the country suffered oppression. Similar atrocities are revealed in the exploration of the treatment of immigrants in Northern cities (particularly Irish and Eastern as well as Southern Europeans), Asian immigrants on the Pacific Coast and Native Americans in Western states. It happened, however, that the South lost the Civil War and remained economically stagnant for more than a hundred years. Because the winners write history, the South became the scapegoat.

For many generations, Southerners simply endured the stigma that people like Christie try to place on them. Meanwhile, in true Southern fashion, they simply bear it in a way that is, simply put, graceful.


Share and discuss “History vital to understanding South's violations” on social media.