I know a thing or two about wingnut Constitutional ideology. I am long a student of and once a practitioner of U.S. Constitutional Law. But this idea of "Pro-Constitution", as in "Pro-Constitution Movie of the Year" had previously eluded me as a current force in popular thinking. Had I missed something? Had I missed something important?
I went digging a little farther. Follow me out into the tall grass if you want to know what turned up.
I actually own both of this guy, Ron Maxwell's, films that are pimped in the promo poster, above. In VHS. You know how it is . . . Dad likes history . . . Dad has Civil War books . . . let's get this for him for fathers day (with his money, of course). They were young. Sigh.
These films were actually TV miniseries about the Civil War, sort of a straight to video thing. Historically, they aren't abysmally inaccurate, but it's clear enough that Mr. Maxwell loves him some ole time Southern gentlefolk and the heroic leaders of defeated Dixie.
BTW, Dad does love him some history And even before looking into the film itself or the book on which it is based, Dad knew from the title that the film was likely to be about Copperheads, as that term was used during the Civil War, to describe people in the Union, who thought it better to let the South go peacefully with whatever institutions it desired to burden itself with. Then I checked. Too right.
So, what is the story of Copperhead? Those prone to queasiness should stop reading now.
Copperhead is the great untold Civil War story. Far from the Virginia battlefields whose names etch our history, the war of Copperhead visits the devastation and unimaginable loss of a civil war upon a family and a community whose strength and very existence are tested by fire, rope, knife, and betrayal. This is the Civil War come home.They are talking about "the bloody and contentious autumn of 1862" in New York. To which I, as an amateur with a lifetime, if dilettantish interest in American History in general and Civil War History in particular, say, huh?
I have never before heard of unconstitutional exertions by fire, rope, knife, and betrayal against the good people of upstate New York in the Autumn of 1862 or any other time. If such a thing had actually ever occurred, you would think that some mention of it might have leaked onto the New Your History page on Wikipedia. You would think the film's promoters would at least try to work something in there, with the premiere this week and all.
But, I guess that being pro-Constitutional doesn't mean being faithful to objective reality or actual history. Mythologies are perfectly acceptable explanations for events as well. Sigh.
So, now here come the "PRO-CONSTITUTIONAL" people, demanding their rights, just like the founding fathers blessed them. Never mind that stuff included slavery. Never mind that ripped the country through it's only nation-breaking Constitutional Crisis. Why? Because Islam scares them, as do people who aren't white and science.
Dare I say this? They cling to their guns and religion. The good news is that they can't maintain their demographic position. As a rear guard action, they try to steal the Constitution for their own on their way out the door.
They can't have it.