A Rock in a Hard Place

Categories: Pop Rocks

conflag0310.jpg
The sweet smell of secession
In five years, we will mark the 150th anniversary of the end of the bloodiest war in U.S. history, and yet a stupefying number of people still don't comprehend how flying a flag associated with treason and -- more to the point -- racism might not be the best idea:

Kid Rock is set to receive the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People's Detroit chapter's Great Expectations Award this May.

The avid fan of soul and hip-hop music is under fire, however, for his use of the Confederate flag during his concerts, the Huffington Post reports. Several NAACP members are protesting his impending recognition for that very reason.
[...]
In an old interview Rock once did, the Post notes, he's quoted saying, "Sure, [the Confederate flag's] definitely got some scars, but I've never had an issue with it. To me it just represents pride in southern rock 'n' roll music, plus it just looks cool.

Shocking, I know, to think a white person born and raised in Michigan would "never have an issue" with the Confederate flag. Almost as surprising to me is the implied proposition that the South's leaving the Union wasn't spurred by the issue of slavery, but rather the right of those below the Mason-Dixon line to bellow "Freebird!" at concerts in perpetuity.

Looked at in that respect, you could almost say they won.

But what should prevent Kid Rock from receiving the Detroit Branch NAACP's award is not that he, like so many other Americans, continues to ignorantly glorify the Confederate flag (technically the "Battle Flag" of the Confederacy), the standard of failed traitors. No, the organization should shun Rock because his music is an affront to all mankind, black and white.

Kid Rock claims to be a huge fan of soul music and hip hop, which may be true. Unfortunately, songs like "Bawitdaba" and "American Bad Ass" exemplify the most derivative and paleolithic aspects of the latter. I have no idea what's behind the reasoning for this particular local chapter of the NAACP, but maybe the "great expectations" of the award in question are that Rock will one day release a song that will actually appeal to the non-meathead population of our fine country.

He's gotten a lot of credit in recent years for branching off from his early aggro rap stylings and doing things like recording a duet with Sheryl Crow and fashioning himself as something of a troubador in the vein of professed influences like Jim Croce and Bob Seger. But even then, his efforts come up short. Rock's highest charting song to date, 2008's "All Summer Long," owes its entire existence to two superior (and dead) songwriters: Warren Zevon and Ronnie Van Zant, whose "Werewolves of London" and "Sweet Home Alabama" were combined, with little enhancement, to make the end "product."

And product it is. That a Yankee like Rock, who grew up and DJ'ed alongside black people, would adopt the de facto standard of "rebel country" isn't (I believe) so much indicative of actual racism as it is his desire to shift as many units as possible. His status as a pure hip hop act was always in jeopardy, coming as it did so close on the career demise of white rap's most notorious figure. I imagine Kid Rock looked out on his overwhelmingly white male audience at Woodstock '99 and experienced something of an epiphany, realizing he could better hold onto maturing brohams by tempering his hip hop shtick with a "Southern" rock sound.

"Michigan" rock being ably handled by Bob Seger and the White Stripes, I guess.

In the meantime, Rock himself is too much of a media "bad boy" to take a lasting hit from this. He can continue to feign ignorance while the celebrity media attention flares out, leaving him with an eventual coveted lead story slot in the 2020 edition of VH1's Name That Has-Been.


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H_e_x
H_e_x

Mississippi (Adopted January 9, 1861): In the momentous step which our State has taken of dissolving its connection with the government of which we so long formed a part, it is but just that we should declare the prominent reasons which have induced our course.

Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery– the greatest material interest of the world. Its labor supplies the product which constitutes by far the largest and most important portions of commerce of the earth. These products are peculiar to the climate verging on the tropical regions, and by an imperious law of nature, none but the black race can bear exposure to the tropical sun. These products have become necessities of the world, and a blow at slavery is a blow at commerce and civilization. That blow has been long aimed at the institution, and was at the point of reaching its consummation. There was no choice left us but submission to the mandates of abolition, or a dissolution of the Union, whose principles had been subverted to work out our ruin.

Georgia (Adopted January 29, 1861): The people of Georgia having dissolved their political connection with the Government of the United States of America, present to their confederates and the world the causes which have led to the separation. For the last ten years we have had numerous and serious causes of complaint against our non-slave-holding confederate States with reference to the subject of African slavery. They have endeavored to weaken our security, to disturb our domestic peace and tranquility, and persistently refused to comply with their express constitutional obligations to us in reference to that property …

The people of Georgia have ever been willing to stand by this bargain, this contract; they have never sought to evade any of its obligations; they have never hitherto sought to establish any new government; they have struggled to maintain the ancient right of themselves and the human race through and by that Constitution. But they know the value of parchment rights in treacherous hands, and therefore they refuse to commit their own to the rulers whom the North offers us. Why? Because by their declared principles and policy they have outlawed $3,000,000,000 of our property in the common territories of the Union; put it under the ban of the Republic in the States where it exists and out of the protection of Federal law everywhere; because they give sanctuary to thieves and incendiaries who assail it to the whole extent of their power, in spite of their most solemn obligations and covenants; because their avowed purpose is to subvert our society and subject us not only to the loss of our property but the destruction of ourselves, our wives, and our children, and the desolation of our homes, our altars, and our firesides. To avoid these evils we resume the powers which our fathers delegated to the Government of the United States, and henceforth will seek new safeguards for our liberty, equality, security, and tranquility.

Texas (Adopted Feb. 2, 1861): We hold as undeniable truths that the governments of the various States, and of the confederacy itself, were established exclusively by the white race, for themselves and their posterity; that the African race had no agency in their establishment; that they were rightfully held and regarded as an inferior and dependent race, and in that condition only could their existence in this country be rendered beneficial or tolerable.

That in this free government all white men are and of right ought to be entitled to equal civil and political rights; that the servitude of the African race, as existing in these States, is mutually beneficial to both bond and free, and is abundantly authorized and justified by the experience of mankind, and the revealed will of the Almighty Creator, as recognized by all Christian nations; while the destruction of the existing relations between the two races, as advocated by our sectional enemies, would bring inevitable calamities upon both and desolation upon the fifteen slave-holding states.…

For these and other reasons, solemnly asserting that the federal constitution has been violated and virtually abrogated by the several States named, seeing that the federal government is now passing under the control of our enemies to be diverted from the exalted objects of its creation to those of oppression and wrong, and realizing that our own State can no longer look for protection, but to God and her own sons– We the delegates of the people of Texas, in Convention assembled, have passed an ordinance dissolving all political connection with the government of the United States of America and the people thereof…

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

Why are you cutting and pasting, hex? Are you trying to force us to read something? Didn't read it.

H_e_x
H_e_x

That doesn't make any sense. This is a short section which should only take a minute or two. They show how slavery was key in choosing to secede.

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

I don't need you to try and forcefeed me any reading material. Are you capable of comprehending that, or should I dumb it down further for you? I have already stated multiple times that,of course, slavery was the main reason.

H_e_x
H_e_x

Because reading is hard, especially when it's pertinent to the subject at hand.

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

Reading is easy, but trying to force someone to read something is childish.

Uhclemm
Uhclemm

Why is it that THOSE PEOPLE can fly the malcom x & when us WHITE PEOPLE want to fly OUR X, WE get called racist?? It's THOSE PEOPLE that are racist. All THEY want to do is KILL WHITE MEN & FCUK WHITE WOMEN, the STINKING ANIMALS.

Wyatt
Wyatt

"can fly the malcom x"

quality trollin', i laughed

H_e_x
H_e_x

It's like a bad email chain from everyones right-wing uncle.

Quannell Xcrement
Quannell Xcrement

Well Hex why would people want to support the black panthers,or the aryan nation. Because it's free will, and no one owes anyone an explanation, I find many symbols repugnant but I deal with it because it's not going away. Just as I think some of the symbols I find appealling you would be less enchanted with.

H_e_x
H_e_x

No one says they can't fly it or support it. If you had read what I wrote, you'd see that. No one is taking away your precious little flag of the side that got its ass whooped in the Civil War. Free country, man. That's what great about it. But I have every right to state my utter disgust with the symbol just as much as you have the right to fly it.

Wyatt
Wyatt

I'm not sticking up for the battle flag, and I'm sure we agree on how terrible slavery is (though I'd say it's based more in greed than hate), but those who got their asses whooped are considered American war dead...Also, "traitor" implies a treasonous act, which, as far as I know, seceding was not. Not in a legal sense, at least.

Also, I'm not really disagreeing with anything you're saying, but you do sound like an angry 15-year-old. Congrats on stooping to the rhetorical level of the folks you're going back and forth with here.

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

You are the last one that should be talking, board monitor wyatt. Hypocrisy abounds indeed.

H_e_x
H_e_x

Damn, I've been successfully trolled by them. Sorry about that.

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

Considering the Union had 3 times as many soldiers and lost more men I wouldn't exactly say the South got their ass whooped. Your ignorance is showing again.

Yes, you have every right to whine and throw around race cards. It is a free country. You are 100% right.

H_e_x
H_e_x

I guess nothing is ever about race in this country. God only knows slavery wasn't about race or anything.

H_e_x
H_e_x

It's a symbol of losers who fought to maintain states rights (also known as slavery). Even if most of the people who fought didn't own slaves, they benefited from slavery in the form of cheap prices for products and labor. Why people want to defend the symbol of a bunch of losers is beyond me.

Hypcocrisy Abounds
Hypcocrisy Abounds

It may seem like a symbol of that for you. You aren't exactly the beacon of knowledge on here.

H_e_x
H_e_x

Aren't we a ray of sunshine. Care to be condescending some more? The internet is just the place for that.

H_e_x
H_e_x

Am I even black? What difference does it make? Are only Jews allowed to be against Antisemitism, women against sexism, and homosexuals against homophobia?

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

The way you are yammering on atop your little soapbox, I'd think you were the direct descendant of Harriet Tubman. You don't even have a horse in this race.

H_e_x
H_e_x

If you had bothered clicking the link you would have read that your statement is par the course for people derailing race discussions. It must be easy to let go of things when they never happened to your family.

H_e_x
H_e_x

http://www.derailingfordummies...Just read this. It's easy to say people are gluttons for punishment and being offended, but to look at why people are offended in the first place means that you have to step outside of your own experience to understand their point of view. Lynchings are something to be offended about. Slavery is something to get offended about. Keeping people as property is something to get offended about. If those aren't reasons to get offended about, then what are?

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

That was then, this is now. Time to let it go. Constantly ripping open old wounds is counterproductive to race relations.

Btw, I didn't bother clicking on your little link.

H_e_x
H_e_x

Only me? Well, if you exclude all black people and a number of whites, then yes, it's only me. But feel free to display the flag of hate. It's a free country. Just don't be surprised when people judge you for it, as is their right.As for you cute little second sentence, well, what can I say. You're here to stir up shit. Bravo, sir, as if that hasn't been done here before by better, funnier people.

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

Some people must be constantly searching out something to get "offended" over all of the time. In fact, the NAACP is an organization based on just that. It's what they do. The flag doesn't stand for hate. You keep on getting offended everytime you see it, it really doesn't matter to me.

Kris
Kris

Um, those of you who allege slavery had nothing to do with the Civil War: please read South Carolina's Declaration of the Causes of Secession. You'll be stunned by the number of times it references slavery.

Pride Not Hate
Pride Not Hate

The flag stands for pride, not hate. Our ancestors fought and died trying to defend their states from what they felt was an out of control, oppressive gov't. The vast majority of them weren't even slaveholders. Referring to them as "traitors" only shows the writer's ignorance on the subject. He should be ashamed of himself for penning such trash.

H_e_x
H_e_x

They were traitors who got beaten by the North. I know it's hard to think about it, but that's what happened. You don't get to secede from a country and not be called traitors. How does that work? If you rebel, you aren't exactly patriots.

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

Why don't you actually go look up the word before attempting to use it? They didn't try to overthrow the gov't, they just wanted out.

H_e_x
H_e_x

That makes them traitors. Jesus man, leaving the country to start your own does not make you a patriot. If you don't like it, move to China or something.

JensenLee
JensenLee

Always happy to hear Zevon's stuff, even as a cover. His lyrics were unique but his refusal to compromise with record label heads limited his audience. “Werewolves of London” was his only big hit, but what a song.

I wrote on my Rockaeology blog at http://bit.ly/hM8zlx that Zevon said that the frightening images in his songs – like “Excitable Boy” and “Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner” hid what really scared him. "Sickness, doctors, that scares me. Not violence -- helplessness. That's why I turn to violent stories."

Quannell Xcrement
Quannell Xcrement

This reader already sees Mr. Vonder Haar for what he is, probably a Green card holder that couldn't cut American history with a chain saw.

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

The NAACP=racist hypocrites. If I were him I wouldn't want to have anything to do with them. They can keep their little meaningless award.

And speaking of hypocrites, Vonder Harr shouldn't be calling anyone ignorant since he obviously doesn't even know the real reasons (yes, there were multiple reasons, Pete) for the Civil War. He also foolishly believes the flag is a symbol for racism or pro-slavery. Crack a history book, you are making yourself look like a fool for all the readers to see.

Wyatt
Wyatt

The first few sentences of Mississippi's Ordinance of Secession:

"In the momentous step which our State has taken of dissolving its connection with the government of which we so long formed a part, it is but just that we should declare the prominent reasons which have induced our course.

Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery-- the greatest material interest of the world. Its labor supplies the product which constitutes by far the largest and most important portions of commerce of the earth..."

Um, yeah.

Also, Pete:

""Michigan" rock being ably handled by Bob Seger and the White Stripes, I guess."

Or, you know, the Stooges, or MC5, or any number of Detroit acts...

H_e_x
H_e_x

If people don't think the war was over slavery, but states right (aka: slavery), then you won't convince anyone. Hanging on to hate is much easier.

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

What hate? Is that your little word of the day? Explain what "hate" you are referring to.

Ignorance Abounds
Ignorance Abounds

BTW, that wasn't text from the Ordinance of Secession, Mr. Cut N Paste, it was from the Mississippi Declaration of Causes of Secession. Did you bother to read the rest of it?

http://battleofolustee.org/rel...

H_e_x
H_e_x

The Confederacy was about hate. Keeping men and women in chains as slaves is hate.

Wyatt
Wyatt

AND that's a perfect time for a typo. I'm liking my own post, just because of that.

Wyatt
Wyatt

"I should've have used the word "real"."

You did...

And I'm not #1, HA. I'm just an average guy who's appreciates an elegant line of reasoning, darn it.

Hypcocrisy Abounds
Hypcocrisy Abounds

OK, Wyatt, if it will make you feel better, I should've have used the word "real". That is not what I meant to convey. Now give yourself a hearty pat on the back. YOU'RE #1!! YOU'RE #1!

Wyatt
Wyatt

All right. Let's look at this. (And yes, I enjoy dissecting the logic. I'm aware that I'm a fucking nerd about this stuff.)

"he obviously doesn't even know the real reasons (yes, there were multiple reasons, Pete)"

The original creates an exclusive set: [real reasons for civil war]. If you had said "the rest of the real reasons," or "all of the real reasons," the set would not be exlucsive. But you didn't say that.

And you said Pete knows none of the reasons within that set. The sole reason Pete provided was slavery. Since, according to you, he does not actually know any of the real reasons behind the war, and the alleged reason he provided was slavery, you are of the opinion that slavery was not one of the real causes of the Civil War.

I'm not saying you actually believe that. In fact you've said that you didn't.

I am saying in this instance you did a very poor job of communicating your thoughts, and then decided to call me out, which just makes the whole thing sillier.

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

It only implies that to you. Did you notice what was in the parenthesis? Of course slavery was a major cause. It was not the only cause. Understand this time?

Wyatt
Wyatt

"...he obviously doesn't even know the real reasons (yes, there were multiple reasons, Pete) for the Civil War."

This implies that slavery was not a "real reason" for the war. But maybe that wasn't what you meant, and it was just a failure of communication.

I responded by pointing out that for one state in particular (and for several others, incidentally) slavery was the primary impetus behind secession. This does not imply that it was the only one. It wasn't.

Can I call you Mr. Shaky Rhetoric?

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

Also notice the hypocrisy by an organization that self-segregates by race throwing race cards.

Hypocrisy Abounds
Hypocrisy Abounds

My point is, of course, there were multiple reasons for the war. Was slavery a huge part of it? Of course. But don't neglect to recognize the others.

Wyatt
Wyatt

Got the name wrong. Doesn't change the argument. And yeah, I've read it, it's not a long document. Defending the right to slavery is a huge part of it.

Care to counter with an actual argument, instead of, "Hey did you read it lol?"

Ignorance Abounds
Ignorance Abounds

Yeah, Wyatt. Slavery was the one and only reason for the Civil War. Uh-huh. Yep.

Wyatt
Wyatt

Where did I say it was the only reason? It was a prominent one, though.

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