NAACP VP: 'Horrors of Civil War shouldn't ever be celebrated'

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The Civil War was a defining moment in the nation's history and the NAACP took time Monday to talk about its lingering effects.

Members discussed their position on the Civil War and slavery and this week's 150th anniversary commemoration.

NAACP state president Dr. Lonnie Randolph and Vice President Nelson Rivers III spoke at the meeting.

Rivers said the bombing of Fort Sumter was to defend slavery and white supremacist views.

"The horrors of the Civil War and this barbaric enslavement of human beings that led to the war shouldn't ever be celebrated," Rivers said.

The NAACP announced it will hold a teach-in at the College of Charleston at 6 p.m. Tuesday. The teach-in is called "The truth about the Civil War and Lingering Effects."

"The matter in which these observances have taken off do not show respect to human beings," Randolph said.

He added that the celebratory tone of the Civil War is wrong. Referring to the Civil War, Randolph said this week's commemoration is one of the worst ever in America.

"What would happen if Germans had a ball about Nazi Germany or if Japan had a ball to celebrate Pearl Harbor?" Rivers asked.

Randolph urged businesses taking part in commemoration ceremonies to take a second look.

The NAACP said it will not protest the commemoration because it wants to teach first. Randolph said the NAACP will have several events coming up to let people know how the group feels about these "injustices."

Rivers called the first shot fired on Fort Sumter "an act of terrorism."

"For many African Americans this will be a painful time," Rivers said.

The NAACP news conference was held at Charity Missionary Baptist Church on East Montague Avenue in North Charleston.

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