Posts Tagged ‘Robert E. Lee’

Source: Pixabay.com | JamesDeMers

Let’s be clear, the reason why slavery and racism are deplorable is self-evident. Also, I’m not a fan of Confederate statues. I never liked them. (I blogged about it here over a year ago.) As uncomfortable as they make me, here’s why they need to stay up — it’s actually very simple:

So, we NEVER forget!

These statues must remain so no one can ever deny that Slavery never happened in America; that Jim Crow, in all it’s ugly forms, never happened!

Sure, we have museums and places like Gettysburg where we can go. But that’s not enough. There needs to be a reminder in every American town and city of our own atrocities. So, we never forget! So, no one can ever deny it happened. So, it never again occurs.

Once these monuments of Lee, Longsheets, “Stonewall” Jackson and alike are gone, we limit the evidence that such beliefs and actions were once a part of the fabric of America. And, once this is gone, we open the door for a new breed of haters: The Deniers!

So, how do we begin this transition? How do we take a statue of Robert E. Lee and give it new meaning? I believe the great comedian and movie producer Mel Brooks has found it.

Years ago, Brooks told Mike Wallace on 60 Minutes:

“Hitler was part of this incredible idea that you could put Jews in concentration camps and kill them…How do you get even with the man? How do you get even with him?” he asks Wallace. “You have to bring him down with ridicule, because if you stand on a soapbox and you match him with rhetoric, you’re just as bad as he is, but if you can make people laugh at him, then you’re one up on him,” he tells Wallace. “It’s been one of my lifelong jobs – to make the world laugh at Adolf Hitler,” says Brooks.

Charlie Chaplin lampooned Hilter. Disney did as well, sending Hilter to Hell. He also enlisted Donald Duck to do the same. Of course, there’s Hogan’s Hero’s. And let’s not forget the hilarious Hilter Pineapple scene in Adam Sandler’s Little Nicky.

The movie Forest Gump is a perfect example of this type of lampooning. Watch the clip here:

You can’t watch that clip without realizing how sad – and ridiculous was this part of our American history.

So, for now, we need to keep these monuments up for the same reason Forrest Gump’s mother gave him his name.

“Momma said that the Forrest part was to remind me that sometimes we all do things that, well, just don’t make no sense.”

And instead of venting our anger with violence, we can bring these statues down with ridicule – and make the world laugh at Adolph Hilter … and all those like him.



James DobkowskiJames Henry is the author of Corporation YOU: A Business Plan for the Soul, ‘Twas, and the new book series Hail Mary. For six years, James taught At-Risk kids in Los Angeles. Today, he lives in New York where he continues to write — and teach. To contact James or book an interview, please contact Mark of Goldman & McCormick PR at (516) 639-0988 or Mark@goldmanmccormick.com.

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