December 1, 2019
MY CORNER by Boyd Cathey
A New, Very Passionate Review of the book, The Land We Love
My friend and fellow writer, “The Dissident Mama,” authors a regular column for her site - http://www.dissidentmama.net/. She writes with fierce conviction and verve about the Southland and about the present parlous condition of these United States, taking no prisoners and not worrying about the politically-correct taboos that strangle dissent in our age. She goes for the jugular!
She has just published a review of my book, The Land We Love: The South and Its Heritage (which appeared one year ago, Scuppernong Press). And her review is unlike most of the other reviews of the volume. She centers on and fathoms the deeply personal reasons for the book and how those reasons—and that Southern background—shaped its creation. I admit that I am a bit overwhelmed by her praise and her ability to get at the “heart of the matter,” as the saying goes. Nevertheless, she does understand those reasons and that background, that history, which she conveys in the review.
And she does so while launching stinging verbal missiles at all our enemies as she writes. I am deeply honored by her kind words.
I pass the review on to you:
Boyd Cathey: Barbarism resistor & storyteller
The “” meme has been an ongoing joke in alternative media for a while now, but corporate media just recently caught wind of it and predictably had a tizzy, saying it “marks the end of friendly generational relations.”
“You can’t stereotype like that,” lectured the apparatchicks while tightly clutching their pearls. “Those seniors deserve our respect. That’s the generation that gave us Civil Rights and Roe v. Wade and the Great Society and liberalized immigration. You can’t criticize them. Where would America be without their progressive values?”
But I wholeheartedly agree with historian Tom Woods, who wrote this in a recent newsletter: “Boomers should be exercising some kind of leadership role today, as our elders. They should be giving us something to look up to.”
“Instead,” he continued, “even the Boomers who consider themselves cheeky and anti-Establishment just repeat slogans and talking points handed to them by talk radio or the Heritage Foundation.”
Boyd ain’t no typical Boomer
Patterns should never broad-brush 100% of a group, but they are patterns none the less. Well, Dr. Boyd D. Cathey busts the Boomer mold. He a wise and learned man who uses his endless fount of knowledge in an eloquent and outspoken way to defend truth against its varied post-modern enemies. Cathey’s book, “The Land We Love: The South and Its Heritage,” is an intellectual sledgehammer against the Establishment however it may manifest itself.
The book, an anthology of previously published articles, is comprised of Cathey’s essays smashing the very “conservative” movement that defines so much of his generation. These neoconservatives claim to be patriotic defenders of First Principles, yet they promote an “inversion of American history.” They are the inheritors of the “Lincolnian Revolution,” which was “the real triumph of the 19th century ‘Idea of Progress.'”
To him (and me) there is no difference between the “leftist crazies” razing Confederate monuments and the alleged “peace demonstrators” violently attacking law-abiding citizens in the street (with little to no recourse) and the “Wall Street billionaires” who fund them, and the Conservative Inc. charlatans who work at or and the normie foot soldiers who empower them. They’ve all made a business of “demonizing the South [in order] to purify the nation.”
The neocons have built their careers on the same egalitarian principles as the perpetual revolutionaries of the left. So, they ridicule and attack (always verbally and sometimes even physically) the “unwashed, rednecky ‘Southern conservatives'” who hold a mirror up to progressivism’s historical inconsistencies and fundamental fallacies.
Cathey knows that if you get the “War for Southern Independence” wrong, you get America wrong. If you don’t grasp the true history of 1861-1865, your ideology, your principles, your worldview, and your institutions are built upon sand.
What’s there to conserve if you don’t understand states’ rights and self-determination, Jeffersonianism and the anti-federalists, sectionalism and the South? At best, you half-ass buttress leftism because you think “America is an idea,” and at worst, you wanna destroy it all. Either way, it’s a cultural genocide meant to silence “backwards” thinking and ring in the age of “progress.”
History is in his bones
Cathey is the product of 10 generations of loyal Tar Heel stock. An ancestor on his mother’s side was a provincial delegate at Halifax when on April 12, 1776, the Halifax Resolves were adopted, “making the colony of North Carolina the first to call for independence from Great Britain.” (I bet most of today’s NC residents – I hate to call them “North Carolinians” since so many of them are identityless transplants from Yankeedom or even foreign climes – don't know the bottom of the state’s flag features a scroll emblazoned with that important date.)
Family on Cathey’s father’s side “were some of the first settlers west of the Yadkin River,” by way of Scotland, through Ulster, and “down the Great Wagon Road from Pennsylvania … eventually [making] it to almost every Southern state.” His roots run deep.
Both Cathey’s paternal and maternal great-grandfathers served as privates in different regiments of the North Carolina Troops, and his great-great-grandfather as captain of The Onslow Grays and his father as private in the 101st Cavalry in WWII.
Cathey’s paternal grandmother was born in 1865, but lived until 1962 and “remembered vividly as a girl the years after that war and Renconstruction. “When I was a boy,” he wrote, “she recounted and passed on those memories and stories to me.”
It was this rich familial history that served as a “seedbed” for Cathey, who earned a master’s degree in intellectual history from the University of Virginia (as a Jefferson Fellow) and a doctorate in European history from the Catholic University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain (as a Richard Weaver Fellow). He went on to serve as State Registrar of the NC Division of Archives and History, and a long-time leader in the Sons of Confederate Veterans.
But Cathey didn’t just earn fancy degrees and work quietly behind the scenes in preservation organizations. He writes. And writes. And writes. Passionately and prolifically. Sometimes about opera or classical music or even his beloved Cocker Spaniels. But it’s his politically incorrect works, of course, that draw him so much ire.
The War is a “window into your view of Western Christian heritage,” Cathey explains, so you cannot understand America without the Southern tradition. People used to understand that. But no more. Gone are studies on brilliant statesman John C. Calhoun and gentleman warrior Robert E. Lee. Enter in the worship of new “conservative icons,” like the heretical MLK and tyrant Lincoln.
Thus, Cathey’s book includes succinct essays to straighten this devolving historical bent. Because “a people without a past have no future,” Cathey elucidates the lives of some of the greatest but long-forgotten Southern heroes, such as Nathaniel Macon, James Johnston Pettigrew, Robert Lewis Dabney, and Jefferson Davis.
The book also features a 1985 interview with Eugene Genovese, whom Cathey describes as an “objective Marxist, a leftist scholar, and a Yankee gentleman.” Genovese would go on to shed his progressive precepts, and become a conservative in the most authentic meaning of the word, as well as one of the South’s most ardent defenders.
Another chapter is a personal story about philosopher Russell Kirk, author of the seminal work “The Conservative Mind” and contributor to the nonconformist magazine. In the early ’70s, Cathey was the personal assistant to Kirk, “who founded back in the 1950s what became American Conservatism (which has now been so perverted).”
Cathey also digs into the controversy surrounding another anti-progressive stalwart, Mel Bradford, whom Cathey says is “perhaps the greatest historian and man of letters that the South produced in the 20th century.” In the ’80s, Bradford was deemed to have unacceptable opinions by the “newly dominant neoconservatives who were rapidly establishing their control over the ‘conservative movement.'”
Bradford’s crime? The distinguished scholar simply “did not worship at the shrine of Abraham Lincoln.” Therefore, the power-hungry progressives within the budding Conservative Inc. juggernaut “torpedoed” his candidacy for two humanities positions in the Reagan administration. Cathey powerfully decries the injustice perpetrated against his “dear and close friend” by “intellectual terrorists” who today still claim the mantle of defending Constitutional principles.
“Defending our story is not backward and provincial but is a part of the defense of civilization as we have known it,” comments Southern historian Dr. Clyde Wilson in the book’s foreword. “Herein [Cathey] has erected a sturdy wall where we can gather to resist the barbarism of our time.”
The triggered barbarians
In an era of leftist outrage mobs and neocon skulduggery, speaking such candid truths can be dangerous business. Having been in the progressive cross hairs for 35-plus years, Cathey knows the risks.
The Southern Poverty Law Center, which I’ve heard more aptly described as the Soviet Political Lying Center, has longtime labeled Cathey an “extremist,” a “hater,” and a “Neo-Confederate” – all meaningless character-assassination charge of the race pimps. But it’s not just Cathey’s pro-Southern writings that trigger the SPLC subversives, it’s also his traditional Catholicism. He’s a believer in Christian dogma and time-honored liturgy. Gasp!
When Cathey found out the introduction to his book would be excerpted in a forthcoming issue of and that the magazine would also include a book review by the ultra-unReconstructed Donnie Kennedy, he joked, “That may get my status as one of Morris Dees’ ‘hatemongers’ raised a bit!'” Cathey offers reflections on the scammin’ SPLC and its grifter co-founder Dees in two riveting essays. You simply won’t believe the shocking levels of corruption until you read it for yourself.
In more recent days (and since the book’s publishing last November), Cathey was targeted by “anti-fascists” because he hosted the annual Confederate Flag Day event held inside NC’s Historic 1840 Capitol. The anarcho-tyrants, who organized through the social-media handle @CrushConfederates, claim the historian wants to “reignite a civil war.”
The unhinged ignoramuses from Smash Racism Raleigh, Capital City Democratic Socialists, and World Workers Party of Durham shrieked that they must “rally against white supremacy” and stop the gathering of people with “known ties to the KKK.”
“About 50-75 vile Marxist demonstrators serenaded us from outside, and when we left we had to have police escorts!” Cathey explained in an email. He wrote about the March 2019 experience .
Home is never a lost cause
“Racist, go home!” chanted the protesters while flipping the bird to this Carolina son and his Southern brothers and sisters in arms (and their children and grandchildren). One man interviewed by the remarked that Flag Day attendees were “interrupting what we already got going on. We ain’t got no drama. Keep it where you’re at.”
Translation: We progressives run the South, and you traditionalists better beware. Wow, such hubris that the bullies consider themselves morally superior to , much less proud Confederate descendants. And even more astounding that these intolerant clowns feel entitled to dictate where Southern-without-apology folks can go and what they can do … and in their own damn home!
Well, Cathey is not going gentle into that good night. And he is inspiring others to the fact that we must begin “rejecting progressivism by recovering the fullness of the American past.”
As Wilson noted, “History is not a science, it is a story.” And Cathey is indeed one of the preeminent American storytellers of our time. He a leader, and that is precisely why the barbarian Establishment hates him so much.