blueburndown: (godhatesthelukewarm)
[personal profile] blueburndown
I'm pretty sure there is some sort of difference between wearing a nazi uniform as wedding gear, and living in a 200 year old house in the south.
I can't really articulate why, exactly, these are two different things...

It would be more accurate to ask if they would have a wedding in a concentration camp.

Who knows, maybe in a 100 years when the camps have returned to nature we'll build apartment complexes over them, but I'm kind of betting not.

Date: 2011-07-17 06:53 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Getting married in the Nazi uniform would be equivalent to getting married in Confederate uniform, which I think is pretty squicktastic, and yes, I know more than one couple in which the groom proudly wore the Gray. :-( In both of those cases, there's the implication that you are taking on the role of Johnny Reb or Hans SS, and that you don't see this as an inappropriate thing to to at a joyous event.

Getting married at a plantation house is - well, technically it wasn't a plantation house, it was an in-town antebellum house, but I did it because it was Grandma's house and large enough to hold everyone, and I didn't want a church or courthouse wedding, not because of anything having to do with its history. You can pretty much assume that a woman or a child has been treated as property and abused in any house older than a few decades. It's not the house's fault; it's just a building, and not a symbol of anything in the way a Confederate uniform or a Stars and Bars is.

Date: 2011-07-17 07:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yeah, I get that. It's actually from a post about those white people who had the 'colonial african' wedding.IDK if you caught that drama.

While I agree that it's just a building, I can see why some people would view it in the same way as nazi's. I think part of it is the historical context is so far removed. I was going to write this scathing, 'These are totally not the same' kind of post. But for some people I guess it kind of is.

I honestly totally forgot you had a wedding in an antebellum house, hope you weren't too offended.

Date: 2011-07-17 10:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
No worries. I actually come from a town that was a hospital town during the Civil War, so it has a fair number of antebellum houses still standing - and they're a significant source of the town's income, since a number of people tour them every year. And the whole "moonlight and magnolias" crappy nostalgia trip makes more money than the honest history, so they play it up - for several years in my childhood, I wore crinoline and hoopskirt and guided people around on one of the tours. :-/ I feel a little weird about it now, but at the time I really was too young to know any better.

My high school world history teacher started a graveyard tour through the cemetery that houses a Civil War burial ground, in which each of his US History students drew a name of someone buried there and researched them; the fifteen most interesting ones dressed up as the character and portrayed them for one of those tours. A South Asian kid drew one of the founders of the state's first KKK group. For a while, he was conflicted about whether to do this at all; he finally decided that portraying the guy as honestly as possible - good family man, mediocre Confederate officer, miserable racist - was the right and honest thing to do. No romanticization, no polishing, but no demonization either - just the bare truth. I got to watch him perform the role, in the traditional white linen suit; it was pretty powerful, where a white kid in the suit might have been squicktastic. But I don't know if an African American kid could have ever brought himself to play the bastard in the first place, nor would I (or the teacher) have asked him to.

I guess what I'm saying is that real history, as it's lived, is a messy thing. There's a 4' x 4' room in my grandmother's basement, brick on all sides with a heavy pine door that latched from the outside. There are screw-holes in the brick, and I know what used to be there. You don't put that room on the tour; the tourists don't want to see it, don't want to remember. But maybe we should. Every white person has shackles in their grandmother's basement somewhere; for me, they were just a little more literal than most.


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October 2011


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