Gen. John Kelly, currently the chief of staff for President Donald Trump, followed his boss into the foolish unknown by suggesting the U.S. Civil War was sparked by a lack of compromise on both sides. This comes as Kelly, sitting down with Fox News, suggested that the removal of Confederate statues shows that history isn’t being appreciated.
Kelly spoke with Fox’s Laura Ingraham in a segment that zeroed in on the removal of the statues. Kelly opened up his stance on things by saying Gen. Robert E. Lee, a slaveowner who kept Black families in horrible conditions, was an honorable man. He then quipped that Lee should be celebrated for his losing effort to protect the Confederate states. But it was Kelly’s suggestion that an inability to compromise led to the Civil War.
The myth goes that the Civil War was about the morality of slavery and the good men of the North looking to strike down the oppressive slave masters of the South. However, history, that pesky thing Gen. Kelly likes to reference in this silly argument, shows us that what truly happened is slavery was a big business and it was more about controlling that commodity versus liberating enslaved Blacks.
People in Confederate states made fortunes on the backs of Black slaves and that was also true, although not to the same degree, in the North. And to that point, many in the North may have abhorred slavery but they weren’t ready to bring Black folks into their homes as one of their own either.
Power and seizing it for one side, not compromise, was the true spark for the civil war, Gen. Kelly. But we’ll let history prove you wrong on this one. Maybe if he was talking about Marvel’s Civil War, he’d have a point.
Check out the reactions on Twitter to Gen. John Kelly’s Civil War assessment below and on the following pages.
Photo: screen cap