[Our Sunday Visitor, March 2, 2003]
What is it about the Civil War? We can’t quite get over it. It’s a story we tell ourselves over and over, never sure we’ve gotten it right.
There’s good reason for that. It’s a complex story, and the easy categories of South Bad, North Good don’t do it justice. Yet, just to demonstrate our ambivalence, it’s the South we pine for. More reenactors want to be Rebs than Yanks. No Northern gal holds the heart-place of Scarlett O’Hara. You can attribute this to romanticizing the losing side, but nobody romanticizes Hitler.