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Re: [alternate-history] Re: Fw: To Live and Die in Dixie

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  • Victorian Cow
    ... All good ideas and respectfully all besides the point. To maintain that level of control they had to be willing to use violence against their supremacist
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 1, 2000
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      >From: "F. Michael Zimmerman" <fmz1@...>
      >Reply-To: alternate-history@egroups.com
      >To: alternate-history@egroups.com
      >Subject: [alternate-history] Re: Fw: To Live and Die in Dixie
      >Date: Wed, 30 Aug 2000 20:11:29 PDT
      >
      >
      >-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
      >Hash: SHA1
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      > > Date: Sun, 27 Aug 2000 13:02:30 EDT
      > > From: "Victorian Cow" <victoriancow2345@...>
      > > Subject: Re: Fw: To Live and Die in Dixie
      > >
      > > >From: "F. Michael Zimmerman" <fmz1@...>
      > > >Reply-To: alternate-history@egroups.com
      > > >To: alternate-history@egroups.com
      > > >Subject: [alternate-history] Fw: To Live and Die in Dixie
      > > >Date: Wed, 23 Aug 2000 13:55:57 PDT
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >4. Does anybody know about the details of the Reconstruction
      > > Ku-Klux
      > > >Klan in OTL? I know that it was dissolved in 1870 by order of
      > > >none other than the Grand Wizard Bedford Forrest himself. The
      > > >publicly stated reason was that any continuation of the Klan would
      > > >leat to unrestrained lawlessness, which was not what the leaders
      > > >had in
      > > mind.
      > > > That had been starting to happen anyhow. There had been lots of
      > > >unauthorized acts by people who just put on white sheets and went
      > > out
      > > >to do as they pleased. The original KKK called these people the
      > > >"outlaw Klan." It is striking that Forrest and the other leaders
      > > >went so far as to call on the Federal government to suppress this
      > > >"outlaw Klan." Up until that point, the Klan had been fighting
      > > >the Federal government. Given the secret nature of the KKK, it
      > > >sounds
      > > as
      > > >if Forrest and the other leaders were facing some kind of internal
      > > >revolt within the organization. Does anybody know with any
      > > certainty
      > > >whether or not this was the case?
      > >
      > > Not an internal revolt as much as endless fissions and similar orgs
      > > with
      > > similar sounding names. Plus it became a cover for endemic poor
      > > rural white
      > > banditry the further west one got.
      >
      >That would seem to be an organizational weakness of secret societies.
      > If Forrest had set it up properly, he would have been the head of
      >what amounted to a political machine with its own militia. It is not
      >human nature to walk away from that kind of power voluntarily.
      >Anybody (such as Robert E. Lee or Jefferson Davis) who could walk
      >away from it would probably have the strength of character not to
      >acquire that much power in the first place. So internal dissension
      >seemed to me the most logical reason to dissolve the Klan.
      >
      >I think that the "cell system" set up by revolutionary groups such as
      >Communist parties probably could have made the Klan a going concern
      >that would have endured. It would have to be able to assure both
      >secrecy and internal control. Additionally, it would have to be able
      >to prevent unauthorized use of its name. But this kind of
      >organizational philosophy did not come until later, I guess.

      All good ideas and respectfully all besides the point. To maintain that
      level of control they had to be willing to use violence against their
      supremacist competitors. This they were never willing to do. The KKK'ers
      enlisted to fight the blacks, Tories and carpetbaggers for Redemption
      (return to Democratic governments of Confederate vets) and white supremacy.
      They did not enlist to kill each other over which sit of dragons would give
      orders that the local klavern would follow or ignore as it saw fit.

      Scott
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