Writing in Salon, Rick Perlstein examines "what Haley Barbour's amnesia tells us" about Southern conservatives' historical revisionism. But largely lost in the imbroglio over Barbour's literal white-washing of the Jim Crow era is that the Mississippi Governor and would-have-been 2012 White House hopeful has plenty of company among the leading lights of the Republican Party. From flying the Confederate flag to talking up secession and nullification, Republicans for years have been casually trafficking in antebellum nostalgia.
In May, Texas conservatives approved an overhaul of the state's textbooks which would remove the word "slave" from the term "slave trade." Of course, that omission was in keeping with two others, asVirginia Governor Bob McDonnell and Mississippi's Barbour celebrated Confederate History Month in their respective states, each without mentioning slavery."