Sid Miller has done it again. Over the weekend, the Texas agriculture commissioner, not content with comparing the release of sensitive intelligence information to freeing slaves, posted a glowing tribute to Confederate President Jefferson Davis, smack in the middle of Black History Month.
The commissioner, best described as a cross between the Marlboro man, a revival preacher and a racist email forward, notes that "On this day in 1861, Jefferson Davis, a former U.S. senator from Mississippi who served as U.S. secretary of war in the 1850s, receives word he has been selected president of the new Confederate States of America. Delegates atthe [sic] Confederacy’s constitutional convention in Montgomery, Alabama, chose him for the job."
Miller then goes on to weave a yarn about Davis nobly leaving his slave-staffed plantation, Brierfield, where he was "pruning rose bushes with his wife Varina," to take a job that he felt may be too difficult.
"He could see the difficulties involved in launching the new nation," Miller writes, before quoting Davis. "Upon my weary heart was showered smiles, plaudits, and flowers, but beyond them I saw troubles innumerable. We are without machinery, without means, and threatened by powerful opposition but I do not despond and will not shrink from the task before me.”
Miller's handiwork, which is lifted almost verbatim from History.com, would be tone deaf but stopping short of outright racism if it stopped there. Because this is Sid Miller, however, it did not stop there.
The comments on the post devolve as quickly as one might expect. Minerva Lea, in one of the first comments on the post, apparently believes that students in Texas aren't taught about the Civil Way in history class. "Sure wish they taught this in school's [sic], instead of all the communist crap they teach now," Minerva writes.
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Which would be fine. Ol' Sid can't control who comments on his posts, however misguided those posts might be. It's easy for Miller to stay out of trouble here. He doesn't though. Miller liked Lea's comment. As he did another comment from Renabella Simpson Brown, who called the treasonous slave-owner "a great man." Despite being given several opportunities, Miller did not like any comments about Davis being a traitor to the United States, a racist or a white supremacist.
When asked for comment by the Observer Monday afternoon, the agriculture commissioner's office referred us to Miller's campaign. Miller's campaign spokesman did not return a request for comment Monday. The post about Davis is still up on Miller's Facebook, last we checked.