Tuesday on CNN’s “Legal View With Ashleigh Banfield,” former Rep. Ben Jones (D-GA), who also was the actor who played Cooter on “The Dukes of Hazzard,” got into a heated exchange over the Confederate flag and white supremacy with Banfield.
Jones pointed out that slavery was not just a “Southern sin” and said “segregation and white supremacy and all of that nonsense — we’ve come through that.”
“Slavery was a terrible thing but it existed in every state in the Union and all of the Colonies and it existed under the American flag from 1776 until 1856 and we remember from Lincoln’s first Inaugural Address where he said let’s keep in the perpetuity, I guarantee its constitutionality,” he said. “So it’s a much more complicated issue. Slavery was hard. It existed everywhere and it was a terrible thing, We’re not here talking about slavery, we’re talking about the flag of our people — they weren’t defending slavery. Most of them had no slaves. The vast majority. They saw it as a country being invaded invaded. They thought they had the constitutional right to secede. Where did it stay say they didn’t? They made that move, they were invaded. They fought very hard for four years, as bravely as any army ever. The South was destroyed, devastated with nothing, 6 million white people, 4 million newly freed slaves with nothing. When Lincoln was asked, ‘What are the slaves going do?’ He said they’ll have to root, hog, or die. That was true of everybody. The South had been destroyed and through all of that, through all of those resentments, through all of that segregation and white supremacy and all of that nonsense we’ve come through that.”
Banfield replied, “I’m going to jump in there. White supremacy is not nonsense. Sir. I’m sorry, white supremacy is not nonsense. It just not even a week ago led to the mortal combat murders of nine innocent church goers. I have to cut that short a minute, I appreciate you taking the time.”
Jones shot back, “I just said it’s not a Southern sin. White supremacy is a sickness that goes on all over the world. This man doesn’t represent us.”