Josh Marshall details fall-out from the Charleston massacre on Talking Points Memo.
I think this is the third post I’ve started with some version of this incredulity. But I still cannot believe the Charleston Massacre has triggered quite this total a collapse of support, not just for flying the Confederate battle flag in places of honor at Southern state capitols, but for public display and honor for the Confederacy and the War of the Rebellion in almost any form. Whatever the precise cause or convergence of under-noticed trends, there now seems like no doubt that we are witnessing a watershed in the country’s long, wretched and denial-ridden wrestling with the public memory of the Civil War.
Just today, Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley (R) quietly ordered the removal of the Confederate flag from the state capitol. Mississippi Sen. Roger Wicker (R), the successor to Trent Lott, whose public career was upended by Confederate nostalgia in 2002, said his state should ditch its current flag (which incorporates the Confederate battle flag) and create an entirely new state flag.
As a distinct but obviously related point, purely as a matter of incentives, can we get the message out to nutball racists and similar monsters that no, you’re horrific race massacre will not trigger a race war. We hear this line again and again and I know at some level it’s more a statement than an actual prediction. But no, your mass murder will not trigger a race war. We now sadly have enough examples to have statistically significant data to confirm that your race massacre will not trigger your race war. In fact, I think that Dylann Roof’s attack will likely be remembered, for better or worse, as much for this watershed as for the deaths of the innocents he killed.