Don Shall / Flickr general lee statue...
Don Shall / Flickr

John Dowd, the head of Donald Trump’s legal team, forwarded a letter on Wednesday that was filled with neo-Confederate distortions, racist justifications, and accusations that both the FBI and Black Lives Matters have been infiltrated by terrorists. The letter was not a random note floating through Dowd’s email stream. It was specifically titled “The Information that Validates President Trump on Charlottesville” and addresses Trump’s giving moral equivalency to murderous Nazis and those standing up to Nazis, by tossing on more more equivalency. In particular, the letter includes a list of items asserting that Robert E. Lee and George Washington were exactly the same.

Both owned slaves.

Both rebelled against the ruling government. …

Neither man is any different than Napoleon, Shaka Zulu, Alexander the Great, Ramses II, etc.

You cannot be against General Lee and for General Washington, there literally is no difference between the two men.

No difference. Once you ignore motive, morality, and how one of these two men was at the head of an army that killed hundreds of thousands of Americans in the name of owning other Americans. How, exactly, Washington is supposed to be similar to Napoleon, Ramses II, or any other member of the list within the list is unclear.

The letter forwarded by Dowd was actually written by Jerome Almon. Whose positions go a step beyond the statements Donald Trump has already made demaning the FBI and and Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

The email’s author, Jerome Almon, runs several websites alleging government conspiracies and arguing that the F.B.I. has been infiltrated by Islamic terrorists. 

Almon doesn’t restrict his attacks to the government.

Mr. Almon’s email said that Black Lives Matter, a group that formed to protest the use of force by police against African-Americans, is being directed by terrorists. 

The comparisons to Washington used in the letter actually invoke items used by the original Confederates in justifying their revolt against the United States. These poorly-argued points have been favorites of white nationalists ever since who want to make heroes of Confederates while not admitting that the whole purpose of their treason was the support of enslaving human beings.

The real story of the Confederacy is a story of an alliance founded on inequality. Where the founding document of the United States stated outright that “all men are created equal,” for the Confederacy…

Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite ideas; its foundations are laid, its cornerstone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery, subordination to the superior race, is his natural and normal condition. This, our new government, is the first, in the history of the world, based upon this great physical, philosophical, and moral truth. This truth has been slow in the process of its development, like all other truths in the various departments of science.

That’s what the Confederacy was about. That’s what Lee fought for. That’s why this disgusting, traitorous history can never be forgotten—and not for a moment celebrated.

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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.


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