Gear: "Born Fighting: How the Scots-Irish Shaped America" by James Webb
"Born Fighting: How the Scots-Irish Shaped America" by James WebbJames Webb (author), Broadway (publisher)
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- TrojanSkyCop, Thu, 06 Mar 2008 06:54:15 UTC.
- 1st review
Yes, the same James Webb who is now a Democratic freshman Senator in VA, and former Sec'y of the Navy under Ronald Reagan. . . and one of whose staff members got busted for inadvertently taking a pistol through a Capitol Hill metal detector.
I must admit to a bit of personal bias here, as I happen to have a Scots-Irish last name (that being Orr) . Webb also stood out in my memory as one of the few pro-gun rights Democrats in the Senate (along with MT's Sen. Max Baucus).
In any event, a highly engrossing and informative history of the Scots-Irish, particularly their warrior culture and resentment of big government dictatorship, from the real-life historical William Wallace to Robert the Bruce at Bannockburn, down the centuries to the Scots-Irish mass emigration to America and huge contributions to the Revolution (Webb points out that while the Founding Fathers of English aristoratic background may have been the driving intellectual force behind the Revolution, the bulk of the rank-and-file patriot soldiers were Scots-Irish), the Civil War (mainly on the Southern side, but the author also points out U.S. Grant's Scots-Irish roots) to the military leadership of the World Wars and all the way to the present.
Webb's section on the Civil War comes across as especially profound, discussing how and why so many Scots-Irish-descended Southrons fought for the CSA despite the fact that they had little to no economic state in the patrician plantation/slavery system, and how said patrician system was actually detrimental to poor white yeomen as well as blacks.
And Sen. Webb talk repeatedly about how weapons ownership and proficiency is a long-standing Scots-Irish tradition, and indeed a sacred and inviolable principle.
Unfortunately, I don't have the book in front of me at the moment so I'm unable to quote excerpts, but I'll be glad to share them later on when time permits.
That said, I strongly recommend this book to those of who who haven't yet read it. To those of you who already have, what're your own impressions? Thanks.
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