Confederate Commercials

The mockumentary “The Confederate States of America” was a fictional movie about an alternate history had the Confederates won the Civil War. In the movie, racism prevails and with that, the continuation of slavery. The movie was a satirical piece that was, although amusing, thought provoking. It addressed various events in history and continually portrayed the south as an oppressive force. The South would eradicate Native American culture, enslave Chinese labor workers, force the Jewish to leave the country, and create a “separate and unequal” world with Latin Americans. In an attempt to reunite the country, the South would even change history books by rewriting slaves as loyal servants and forcing Northerners to own slaves, something the Northerners would eventually appreciate.

What particularly struck me were the “commercials” in the film. These advertisements gave a glimpse of what modern life could be like. The ads consisted of job advertisements for unqualified doctors or “breeders” to treat slaves or for a police chase t.v. show called “Runaway.” The commercials included everyday products with names like “Sambo,”  “Darky toothpaste,” and new revolutionized slave technology. Although these commercials appear to be greatly exaggerated, with the use of overt derogatory statements, it makes one wonders if certain aspects of these commercials would have been possible today. Like others have posted, I can’t help but wonder if I would find still find these commercials absurd and racists if I was raised in Confederate culture. I wonder if slave culture would have continued or if racism would be more prevalent then it is today. Even in contemporary culture where the Union won the war there are still modern commercials that are taken down because they are deemed to be prejudiced or insensitive. If Confederate beliefs had somehow influenced more legislation or history in the past, how much would it have changed society today? Would there be products, ads, and shows specifically targeting a race? One could claim that those do exist today.

As those below me have mentioned, the film is a mockumentary that is meant to be satirical and highly exagerating but parts of it are based on truths. Racism did clearly exist in the South and, unfortunately, does exist today. This film may have been about an alternative history but it forces one to think of modern culture today.

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