This lobby is kind of plain, in a world that’s always been plain. Until thirty years ago, I would visit doctors or dentists at the Lee Medical Building, that was brick and had little Art Deco touches in the light switches, and door handles . Every office entry door was translucent glass, with the exception of the podiatrist on the first floor. Mother called him her “toe nail cutting man”. She was diabetic, so she needed this level of care.
The Lee Medical Building was named for Robert E. Lee, whose monument stood outside in a traffic rotary. It stood there over a century until a spineless governor engineered its removal through the General Assembly. This same governor was photographed in both blackface and Ku Klux Klan regalia in his misspent but privileged youth. He was joking, but we proletarian shit kickers wouldn’t understand his sense of humour. The Marxists and the African-American haute bourgeois power elite found the Confederate monuments offensive after everyone else just considered them works of art. They wanted them gone. So now they’re gone.
But I digress.
Today I was sitting in a medical office building lobby. Outside is a giant parking lot, paved with asphalt. No Monuments loom outside to offend whatever sensibilities our brutalist culture has yet to destroy.
I sit and wait while my wife has her urologist’s appointment.Through the lobby comes a procession of the sick and their accompanying family members. Some infirm and elderly rich have an aide to help them. Some infirm and elderly people have no one. And they get confused about appointment times and locations. The healthy, more or less, go up for a venous stick and a blood draw. They emerge with a circle of blue stretch tape at the elbow. Children and their mothers go to the dentist. A frail elderly woman, grasping her health aide’s arm as if for dear life, goes to the pharmacy.
All in all, this sitting and watching is a humbling experience. I am healthy, lucid and coherent, unlike the folks I observe. My wife eventually returns from her doctor’s appointment.
We go to lunch at a luncheon space in a fancy furniture store, where the haute bourgeois of all races, creeds, sexes, sexual orientations and genders buy their overpriced furniture. Their children, grandchildren, cats and/or dogs must not mess up white fabric furniture. These consumers must not need, or avoid, clear vinyl slipcovers.
My lunch, an homage to my congenital Southern Whiteness, is a variation of the BLT. It is a sandwich with bacon, a fried green tomato(FGT), and pimento cheese, along with some Bibb lettuce. The sandwich is tasty even though the FGT falls out. A minor inconvenience.
So this day’s foray ends, the anniversary of the Branch Davidian blood bath in Waco , the Columbine massacre, the bombing of the Alfred G. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. Oh and one hundred thirty four years ago, Adolf Hitler was born in Linz, Austria.
I remember, after the end of Cold War, the monuments of Lenin, that were all over the countries in Eastern European block, went down. Some also complained about it, as history or art. As such, some were put in museums. And that’s good, that’s where they belong.
Maybe so, but Monument Ave was an exquisite example of urban architecture and design. Monument Ave was the Museum where these monuments belonged. As to your analogy, comparing Lee, Davis, Forrest with Lenin and Marx is a bit forced. The monuments erected after the Civil War in both the North and South, honouring the their respective heroes, commemorated the most profound event in American History. Few families were not touched personally by a loss. Some communities never recovered. To discard our history to appease a few malcontents and Marxists is sheer folly. Look at Russia and the former eastern bloc today, where the full breadth and depth of the nations’ heritage are being restored.
Mobs destroy. When they’ve destroyed the monuments that “deserve” to be destroyed, the mob goes after the next batch of heroes. We’ve already seen the segue from Lee to Grant and Lincoln.
How long til the mob literally cuts out our hearts?
It was profound event in American History. But America has been keeping its history nice and sterile, avoiding difficult conversation and facing its past demons. You can not move forward without it. But because many people feel uncomfortable about it, they keep trying to put a lid on it, and say this is re-writing history. It’s not re-writing, it is finally uncovering real history. There are sensitivities on all sides.
Yes, those countries are going back to their history BEFORE communism, before they were occupied.
I am not comparing Lee and Lenin, but the historical situation. Both were on the wrong side of history (from opposite directions) and caused a lot of blood shed. It is not surprise that people do not want to look at the oppressors being put on pedestal in the middle of our cities, as somoene to admire.
One could argue that you calling people Marxists is “a little bit forced”. I do not see anyone calling for nationalizing means of productions and getting rid of private property. It’s a word used to scare people.
How does one boil a frog?
The economic effects of Marxism aren’t apparent yet, but I do see leftist mobs interfering with the right to free speech on college campuses on a regular basis. And the
Mobs are supported by the college administrations. I’m not scared by the word “Marxist”. I fear actions to imperil the free expression of ideas far more daunting.
As to Lee, he resigned his commission in the US Army to serve and defend his home state. Your home state meant something back then, far more than it does now.
If you follow prevaricating frauds like Howard Zinn and the author of the 1619 Project, then all this Marxist oppressor clap trap used to destroy our cities is fine. But, like it or not it is our history. Destroying things to make way for a far more egregious lie, is down right evil. The destruction isn’t about making way for the truth, but pandering to the mob. Demagogues like Richmond Mayor LeVar Stoney do such things. Taking down monuments only embellishes the reputations of the Confederate heroes.
Maybe if the Democratic political leadership on a local state and national level performed actions that shattered the cycle of urban poverty and drug abuse, rather than demonise the dead, we could accurately contextualise the Civil War, and even slavery.
I think we just have to agree to disagree.
Sure, that’s fine.