The Tennessee’s Sesquicentennial Commission held its inaugural Signature Event on November 12 around the theme, “The Coming of the Civil War” in Chattanooga. Then-Governor Phil Bredesen offered these thoughts, this “inaugural event will create conversation, stir interest, and help people develop a greater appreciation for history and acknowledge the role this war played in the lives of all Americans.”

Country musician Trace Adkins spoke and expressed his opinion about the Civil War being fought primarily over States’ rights. He explains why he will not cut his hair until . . .

Because I respect Adkins’ view, my question is this – for people who have the same sentiment as Trace Adkins, i.e., the Civil War was fought mainly over States’ rights, and until THAT is settled – nothing is settledwhen will that issue ever be settled? What will convince you it is settled?

Regardless of why one believes the Civil War was fought, primarily or secondarily – over States’ rights, taxation, to preserve the Union, etc., – did not the surrender at Appomattox April 9, 1865 settle the issue(s) legally for our country? Did not Confederates have to take the oath of allegiance to be considered in good legal standing again with the United States government, and no longer in rebellion?

I’m trying to understand what would ever convince Trace Adkins that ‘the issue’ has been settled?  Would it be a legal recognition or declaration from the U.S. Congress that the Confederate States had a right to secede?  Short of that, what would represent a settled issue for Adkins, or for you, if you believe similar to him?

Is the “not cutting of his hair” Trace’s way of saying, “I continue to be in rebellion until it is legally acknowledged that I have a right to rebel?”