Last week, Sarah Willets wrote about a Durham judge explaining to local Republicans why he didn't convict three of the people accused of tearing down a Confederate monument. Some apparent Confederate sympathizers were on it in the comments.
Writes Timothy Simpson, who sounds nice: "This ignorant judge and district attorney need to be removed. These memorials are dedicated to the brave soldiers who sacrificed their lives. Many never returned home, having been killed in battle and buried in a shallow mass grave. Whole communities served together. Some towns lost almost the entire male population in battle because of this. So these memorials were erected in honor of the fathers, husbands, brothers, sons who made the ultimate sacrifice. The trash tearing them down are grave-robbers at best. America's version of ISIS, destroying everything that doesn't fit their ignorant narrative. These acts will not keep being tolerated. God bless the boys in gray and God bless Dixie! Deo vindice!"
(Deo vindice, or "With God as Our Defender," was the national motto of the Confederacy.)
Next up, Greg Pearson: "Why does the writer of the article try to imply some nefarious intent to placing the veterans' monuments? Of courses it was about fifty to sixty years after the war. That's pretty normal. Veterans' memorials are commonly placed fifty years after a conflict. Also it was illegal until about 1870 to display any Confederate items due to military occupation. Any educated individual knows that after the war the South was economically devastated, so even after it was no longer illegal to erect such memorials, it often took years to raise the funds for them.
"The Klan of that time period was not relevant. If one actually studies history, one will find that the Klan of that era did not use Confederate symbolism. It was a 'national' organization with huge numbers of members up north. It had no bearing at all on the erection of veterans' memorials. The fact that Jim Crow laws were in existence is not relevant to the creation of memorials to men (black and white) who defended their homes and families."
Gordon1 makes a similar point: "Union monuments were also put up at the same time, so let's cut through the opinions and puffery of the NAACP and every other organization that wants your grandmother's Social Security check. Elected people today are not leaders. They are cowards who failed to enforce the laws of North Carolina for political expediency. The rot in this country started with Obama and worked its way down to local levels. The monument was the result of veterans and war widows giving countless bake sales and dimes from their pensions. The ignorant who wrecked that monument showed no respect to the people of all colors who attended the dedication. These convictions would have been a slam dunk in a court of competent jurisdiction, but thugs are able to get away with anything lest they burn the town to the ground."
On to another subject that arouses local passions: Grayson Allen. Following the UNC-Duke game, Michael Venutolo-Mantovani wrote a wrap-up that called the Duke senior a "dirtbag." Commenter D1 doesn't take kindly to that description: "Nice slander piece, bum. No one is forcing you or anyone else to watch him play. Grow up. You and others like you are what's wrong with the media. Cowards. Ironically, if you or anyone like you actually met Grayson Allen, you all would be trying to get photo ops with the kid. Then, of course, posting on social media and taking jabs after the fact. None of you cowards would say anything negative to his face."
Finally, Robert Hawkins sees a racial angle: "The article is laughable. It was written by a very obvious UNC fan. Grayson Allen is a competitive college athlete who, no matter his behavior, can't escape the scrutiny of the media and opposing fans. He is singled out because he is a white athlete at Duke! If he were black, the media would shy away from criticizing him in fear of being labeled racists!"