One of the peculiarities of Americans is our tendency to latch onto “memes” about our own ethnic origins. The best example of this would be the Irish-American phenomenon, where millions of people who likely have no significant Irish ancestry proclaim that their blood runs green, when they can’t name one county in or historical figure from Ireland. These obnoxious people are understandably hated both by native Irishmen and their actual ethnic kinsmen in America.
In America, whites are denied any sense of ethnic or racial pride, with a few exceptions to white ethnic groups deemed “oppressed” by the progressive zeitgeist. Irish-American culture is loud, vibrant, and not (yet) politically incorrect. We can’t blame deracinated people for trying to find *some* sort of identity. On the other hand, German-Americans are afraid of being called Nazis for not actively hating their own people, even when if their ancestors arrived in America well before the National Socialist ascendancy in Germany. Worse still is the plight of Anglo-Americans, who are truly the forgotten people of America, despite being responsible for a large chunk of our ancestry and all our best traditions.
In the South, many have never considered themselves anything other than Americans. In fact, most Neo-Confederate groups never made mention of the ethnic identity of Southerners at all, preferring to stick to constitutionalist and classical liberal justifications for Southern self-determination. In their mind, the South should be free not for the betterment of the Southern folk, but to preserve the political legacy of Thomas Jefferson. This changed, to my knowledge, with the League of the South. The first truly Southern Nationalist group, they’re contributions to the cause are immeasurable. The League emphasized Southern ethnic identity, and while they and other Southern identitarians at the time misidentified our ethnic origins, we can thank them for furthering Southern identity and the interests of Southern folk then and now.
Around this time, the “Celtic Thesis” of the South was very popular. This thesis essentially says that Southerners are overwhelmingly “Celtic” in ancestry, and this is responsible for the culture of the South. Despite claiming to be a “forgotten people,” purporting to be Scots-Irish has recently become eminently fashionable in the South. Many books, articles, and documentaries have been produced for this so-called forgotten-people. The Scots-Irish were never a majority in Southern Appalachia (they were accompanied by just as many, if not more, Englishmen, not to mention Germans). Additionally, manly famous figures and traditions are claimed to be Scots-Irish when they are in fact English. This weird fixation on obscure ethnic groups is a sort of reverse cuckoldry. Instead of raising another man’s son, we are pretending another man is our father. Keep in mind, I myself have Scots-Irish ancestry through the male line, and I proudly bear a Scots-Irish surname. It wasn’t until I dug into my genealogy that I discovered just how Anglo I really was.
There seems to be a strong anti-English sentiment in America, which ranges from viewing Anglo-America as “vanilla” to intense hatred for the English. Worse than being evil, Anglo-Americans are seen to be boring, so they are largely forgotten. Occasionally, the stuffy WASP will be let out of the cellar to be publicly humiliated as a relic of America’s racist past.
As Peter Hitchens said:
“Americans may say they love our accents (I have been accused of sounding ‘like Princess Di’) but the more thoughtful ones resent and rather dislike us as a nation and people, as friends of mine have found out by being on the edge of conversations where Americans assumed no Englishmen were listening. And it is the English, specifically, who are the targets of this. Few Americans have heard of Wales. All of them have heard of Ireland and many of them think that they are Irish. Scotland gets a sort of free pass, especially since Braveheart re-established the Scots’ anti-English credentials among the ignorant millions who get their history off the TV.”
The South is Anglo-Saxon. All 13 colonies (except for Pennsylvania) were overwhelmingly of English ancestry, and the South was never subject to the mass-immigration from Continental Europe that the North experienced. Native Southerners are largely of the same stock that inhabited their states in 1790. Furthermore, more western Southern states were settled mainly by eastern Southern states. Many Kentuckians have bloodlines going back to Virginia, for instance. This was not unknown to our ancestors. George Wallace referred to Dixie as the, “Anglo-Saxon Southland” just a generation ago. Before that, many prominent Southerners were aware of their English origins. When Lieutenant Richard Armstrong, of the CSS Alabama, met with pleas of mercy from a Yankee ship captain, this was his response:
“We are nothing to each other as countrymen. The North and South are now distinct races, with no feelings or interests in common. The people of the South are the only true representatives of the American race. You of the North have intermarried so much with the lower classes of Europeans that you have, in a great measure, if not altogether, lost your nationality, and are not worthy to be considered of the same people as ourselves.”
This is explicit ethno-nationalism in a way that Neo-Confederates would have swept under the rug. The sad truth is that the “mercenary hordes” from Southern Soldier clearly refer to the legions of Germans, Irish and other immigrants that fought, in the hundreds of thousands, for the Union cause.
This isn’t to say that there aren’t Southerners with Irish, German, French or other European ancestries, because there are, but it does not change the ethnic origins of our folk as a whole. Our blood, our language, and our culture are rooted in Britain, specifically England. It’s high time we acknowledge that. Our nation wasn’t born in 1861, and it didn’t die in 1865.
-By Will Galloway