Martyrs of the Race Course

To truly honor Memorial Day means putting the politics back in. It means reviving the visions of emancipation and liberation that animated the first Decoration Days. It means celebrating those who have fought for justice, while exposing the cruel manipulation of hundreds of thousands of U.S. service members who have been sent to fight and die in wars for conquest and empire.”

Chew on that while enjoying the BBQ.

And here you can read the actual history of Memorial Day from a Yale professor, a history in which 28 black workmen in Charleston, SC exhumed and gave proper burial to 257 Union soldiers who had died at a confinement camp on a former race track, and built an archway entrance bearing the double-entendre: “Martyrs of the Race Course.”

Black Civil War soldiers.

Black Civil War soldiers.

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The At Long Last Death of William Zantziger

So now I find myself wishing that the Christian idea of some sort of final judgment is true. And hoping that Hattie Carrol’s family breathes more freely and walks a bit lighter now.

This is what happened in 1963, a short stark write-up from the New York Times.

This is perhaps the best commentary on this “incident” among thousands upon thousands of similar “incidents” in the history of America (and of “civilization” in general):