During the Civil War between 1861 to 1865, a man named Nathan Bedford Forrest rose from the private rank to lieutenant-general of the US Confederate army. He is known to be a great cavalry officer who fought in numerous battles during the war, including the battles of Chickamauga, Brice’s Crossroads, Second Franklin, and Shiloh. He was also the first leader of Ku Klux Klan.
He was considered a military hero and to honor him, the 13th of July was made a holiday in 1921 and eventually became a national day of observation in the State of Tennessee in 1969. However, there’s an ongoing protest on discontinuing this tradition due to these apparent reasons:
1. Nathan Bedford Forrest is also remembered as the leader of the troop who massacred black soldiers in the Battle of Fort Pillow in 1864 following their Union surrender.
2. He had humble beginnings as a boy who came from a poor family but eventually had a good amount of fortune working as a slave trader.
3. According to a democrat state representative, he killed thousands of people, men, women, and children during his lifetime.
4. He did not hold political office, therefore, his bust should not be displayed in the Tennessee Capitol Commission Building.
5. Nathan Bedford Forrest Day is a symbol of white supremacy and it signifies racism. Apparently, the man himself was a racist.
With all these reasons given by the protesters versus his contributions and bravery as a Confederate Military General during the Civil War, do you think Nathan Bedford Forrest is indeed a symbol of American freedom?
Does he deserve to wear one of these freedom shirts or perhaps one of these baseball jerseys, if he happens to still be among us? Do you think we should continue celebrating Nathan Bedford Forest Day?
What are your thoughts about this? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below.