I knew that Richard Nixon employed a “Southern strategy” to get votes, but until reading a recent Washington Post article by a retired Army general, I had no idea how depraved and immoral it was.

When Nixon went to speak at West Point in 1971, he was distressed to find that there was no Confederate memorial there and ordered the superintendent to put one up. Fortunately, the superintendent (unlike Nixon) had moral scruples, conferred with African American cadets, and refused to follow Nixon’s directive. The cadets argued that West Point graduates who served the Confederacy “abrogated their oath,” and thus their service should not be memorialized or celebrated.

It is now nearly 50 years later and the current president threatens to veto a defense spending bill if military bases that bear the names of Confederate traitors are renamed. Disgraceful.

Considering it is now 155 years since the end of the Civil War, isn’t it time for southerners to accept that they lost? That the so-called “lost cause” and “states rights” arguments are merely cover for white supremacy? And that it’s time for the confederate flags and statues to get moved into the museums, where they belong?

Richard Whiting, Auburn

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