"Civil War" is trending on Twitter, and not because of a new Marvel movie or Ken Burns documentary. It's because White House chief of staff John Kelly said the Civil War was sparked by "the lack of the ability to compromise."
In an interview that aired Monday night on Fox News, host Laura Ingraham asked Kelly about a Virginia church removing historical markers for Confederate General Robert E. Lee and George Washington. Kelly said Lee was "an honorable man" and that removing Confederate monuments shows "a lack of appreciation of history."
The comments drew the fire of many on Twitter, including a long thread from author Ta-Nahisi Coates.
Regarding John Kelly's creationist theorizing on Lee and the Civil War, its worth pointing out a few things.— Ta-Nehisi Coates (@tanehisicoates) October 31, 2017
To Kelly's assertion that it is "dangerous" to apply current social standards to history, Coates said: The "[n]otion that we are putting today's standards on the past is, in itself, racist — implies only white, slave-holding, opinions matter."
In the Fox interview, Kelly also stood by the comments he made about Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-Fla.). In the wake of Trump's response to soldiers killed in Niger, Kelly had excoriated Wilson for taking credit in 2015 for getting funds for an FBI building — but video of the event Kelly referenced showed his claims weren't true.
Contributing: The Associated Press