Anniversary Post: Colfax Massacre

Colfax Massacre 'Riot' SignOn this day in 1873, the Colfax massacre occurred. As you can see in the image on the left, it is referred to as the “Colfax riot” by bigots. The end of “carpetbag misrule” was really the the new beginning of white rule by terrorism. That sign was put up in 1950.

This is what Ian Millhiser wrote of it in his book, Injustices:

Led by Christopher Columbus Nash, an ex-Confederate army lieutenant who was also the Democratic candidate for Grant Parish sheriff, Democratic forces marched on Colfax on April 13. Though the approximately 150 black men defending the courthouse slightly outnumbered Nash’s men, the Republican forces were massively outgunned. About half of Nash’s men were Confederate veterans, including four officers. Each of them was well armed, many of them with multiple guns, and they had even brought a small cannon to Colfax on a two-horse wagon.

Think about the Colfax Massacre in a modern context. This is what you get when you take a “forgive and forget” (one president might say “look forward as opposed to looking backwards”) attitude toward misbehavior. I’ve discussed this issue many times. I recommend that you check out, Let’s Destroy Laudatory Confederate Monuments. It includes the amazing statistic that although the people of Kentucky stayed with the Union and overwhelmingly supported it, the state has 72 Confederate monuments compared to only two for the Union.

Rewriting the Colfax Massacre

When you allow people to pretend that they did nothing wrong, you allow them to rewrite history. Looking at monuments around the United States, you would think that the Confederates had had some great injustice done to them. They were traitors. They committed treason. General Lee should have been put to death by the mores of the time, not allowed to ride away on his horse with his sword.

I think the same thing about torture. Now we have Dick Cheney going all around talking about how great torture was and how it kept us all safe. Now there’s a man who should have died in prison long ago. But instead, he’ll continue to live to the point where he is all machine and no flesh. There is absolutely no great new life extending technology that won’t be put to use for this most vile of men.

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