Ghosts Of The South

The Civil War ended 136 years ago. But as Mississippi votes to keep the Confederate emblem on its state flag, Steve Lopez travels the South and asks, What's all the noise about?

It was over a lunch of Confederate fried steak in Columbia, S.C., that I realized something crucial about North and South. A passport ought to be required to travel from one to the other. Despite decades of economic and cultural homogenization, the regions remain as different as basketball and NASCAR. That thought occurred when my lunch partner, a man named Chris Sullivan, told me this: "To say the War Between the States was about slavery is like saying the Revolutionary War was about tea." And he meant it, sure as the pear trees bloom in sun-washed Columbia, the South is rising...

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