I just wrote this elsewhere and I'd like to capture it here for posterity:
I know I'll get tagged for Godwin's law for this, but I find a comparison between [the removal of the confederate battle flag from the South Carolina Capitol as being seen as a terminus in the on-going conversation about racial division in the United States today] and German naziism and what the swastika has come to represent. When a large number of Germans who didn't actively partake in the Nazi party had finally realized what their idealistic society had birthed, they were overcome with guilt, so much so that psychologists of the time (no less than Carl Jung) referred to this very common symptom as Kollektivschuld, or "collective guilt".
When I look for parallels with the U.S. civil war, I see a distinct lack of them. Southerners and Northerners alike never accepted the responsibility of having slavery embedded into our Constitution. There was no guilt and there was no reparation. Instead, most people continue to stand by ignorantly or tacitly while the effects of our ancestors policies result in perpetual race division.
Short of convincing everyone that we need to instantly and randomly redistribute wealth and property, I don't know how the problem can be solved, and I feel like by just standing by and acknowledging that a problem exists, I'm still not helping to solve the problem. Every tax dollar I pay to incarcerate another black man so he can have his right to vote removed just perpetuates this.
And I hate that I do it. And I hate that I have no answer. And I know I'm part of the problem.#Weisskollektivschuld #ForeverGuilty