In response to Tracy Williams' letter to the editor ("Confederate heritage bill is a bad idea," Feb. 26), I am one of those historians who believes that when studying the Civil War people might sell themselves short if they focus solely on the issue of slavery.
As Mr. Williams stated, it is "his perspective" that slavery was the main reason the Civil War was fought. I invite him to study the subject more in-depth, and he may find his perspective would change, if even a little.
As for the bill in question, it seems fine to me. Mr. Williams is correct: The bill makes no mention of slavery. So why bring it up at all? As far as "divisive" bills are concerned, this is the end of Black History Month, and I'd like to see his definition of the word.
In short, our legislature is trying to do some good, and nowhere does this bill mention slavery. In this case, as with many others, it is the people who choose to turn items into a race issue.
The Civil War (and true with all history) happened in the past and there is nothing we can do to change why or how it occurred. But by allowing ourselves to study history with an open mind and an attention to detail, we can learn from our past and instill in us a greater respect for those who lived it.
Gould B. Hagler II