It was a great article, if you missed it. However, it only scratched the surface.
This morning, an article popped up in some of my Facebook groups from the Dallas Observer titled “In Small-Town North Texas, Some Confederate Monuments Still Stand Tall.” If you’ve been following my blog for any period of time, you know that I have written extensively about how the Confederacy is still thriving in small-town Texas. It is ABSOLUTELY important that urban and suburban Texans know about rural Texas’ fight against these Confederate assholes. It should have national attention. Everyone should know the fight that Black communities have been going through in rural Texas for years.
The fight against the Confederacy in Texas should be national news. At Living Blue in Texas, we’ve done what we can to expose it, but with a name like Living Blue in Texas, we don’t get many readers outside of Texas. I’m happy the Dallas Observer covered this story. However, as we have been covering this issue for almost a year now, we immediately noticed some important details they left out.
It is our wish that the Dallas Observer, the Dallas Morning News, the Texas Tribune, the Houston Chronical, and all other media outlets in Texas work harder to expose the severity of racism, systematic racial issues, and racial violence, which is still happening all over in rural Texas.
Some Confederate Statues still stand tall in North Texas.
Some. The definition of some is “an unspecified amount or number of.” I wouldn’t have said “some,” I would have said A LOT. Aside from the broken statue which sits on the Kaufman County Courthouse courtyard, Confederate statues can also be found in:
- In Fair Park in Dallas
- Palo Pinto
Those are just the tip of the iceberg. There are Confederate statues in almost every rural county in Texas. Some counties have multiple statues.
The Dallas Observer article briefly mentioned Egypt, Texas and linked it to the same TSA article I linked in my article about the racial violence and murders in Kaufman County in the early 1900s. However, an important detail that the Dallas Observer left out was how Egypt was once a thriving Black community with Black businesses, a general store, and their own physician.
In 1901 it was reported that gold was found in Egypt and by 1903 white Kaufman County residents forced the Black community to leave. Why is this an important detail? The Confederate Statue was erected in 1911, only eight years after white Kaufmanites forced a thriving Black community out of their homes and businesses. One racial incident in Kaufman has led to another, and another, and another after that. While the modern Neo-Confederates in Kaufman defend this statue as “not racist,” the people and events surrounding the statue have been racist since the beginning.
The United Daughters of the Confederacy.
The Dallas Observer called the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) in their article “a hereditary association.” Which is like calling the Ku Klux Klan a social club. In fact, the UDC has long documented ties with the KKK. It is an undeniable fact the United Daughters of the Confederacy is a racist organization that has spent more than 100 years fighting against civil rights, Black liberation, and equality.
The Dallas Observer quoted Jennifer Robinson as a local resident. However, while she may live in Kaufman County, she is actually the leader of the Mabank chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy. The Dallas Observer reported a written quote from her but failed to mention her involvement in the hate group.
The Kaufman Confederate statue has been moved a couple of times.
Living Blue in Texas wrote about the time the Kaufman Confederate statue was moved. Technically, if you count how it was moved to storage briefly before it was moved to the new courthouse, I guess that would be a couple of times.
However, the ode to white supremacy has only stood in two places in Kaufman County. In front of the old courthouse and now in front of the current courthouse.
The Dallas Observer article described the opposition in Kaufman County as “counter-protesters” It was correct for them to say that they were waving Confederate flags and displaying firearms. However, they weren’t “counter-protesters,” they were racists who were “counter-protesting.”
Now, you might say, “Michelle, that’s just semantics.”
It’s not. The AP Stylebook clearly says it’s ok to call something or someone racist when it clearly is.
In fact, the Dallas Observer’s article failed to call out the Confederate statue, the people fighting to keep it, or they hate groups involved, as racist. By not calling out racism, it in fact does a disservice to the entire American fight against racism. Given America’s history, every media should be asking if race or racism plays a role in whatever issue they are investigating, if it does, then call it what it is.
Sherman, Weatherford, Paris, and Gainesville.
The Dallas Observer mentioned all of these places in their article. Which is great, they need attention, too. However, in each place, they only referred to one incident last year. You can look back through Living Blue in Texas’ archives and you’ll discover that there wasn’t just one incident or a few incidents in these places. This has been an ongoing issue in all of these places. The groups who regularly protest, especially in Weatherford and Gainesville, have been protesting on a regular basis. They still have protests planned and are still working to get the statue removed.
A lot of protesters took time off between the election and inauguration because of the sheer amount of threats they were receiving during that time. None of them have stopped or gone away.
The most important detail the Dallas Observer missed in their article about rural Confederate statues.
In almost every single town where these statues still remain, the Black communities and their allies want the statues off of the public tax-payer-funded property. The fight to keep the statues on the tax-payer funded property is headed by the United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Sons of the Confederate Veterans, both are Neo-Confederate groups with historical ties to the Ku Klux Klan, still peddle Lost Cause Mythology and revisionist history.
These Neo-Confederate groups in modern times have ties to municipal government officials and militia organizations. Part of ending racism in Texas is exposing these groups and stop allowing them to have an influence on local issues. Revisionist history is still being taught in Texas schools, that has to end.
We all need to call out racism and bad behavior when we see it. As long as we tiptoe around it or act like it isn’t as bad as it is, it will continue to make the lives of our Black and brown neighbors hard.
To the Dallas Observer, keep bringing these issues to light, it will take all of us to fix racial injustice.