Tennessee Gov. Declares Day Honoring Slave Trader and Early Leader of the KKK

Mary Barra, General Motors Chairman and CEO, speaks with Bill Lee, Governor of Tennessee.
Mary Barra, General Motors Chairman and CEO, speaks with Bill Lee, Governor of Tennessee.
Photo: Bill Pugliano (Getty Images)

Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee tipped his hand, and it’s racist AF.

For some reason that only Southern states will understand, Lee signed a proclamation declaring July 13 Nathan Bedford Forrest Day.

Who in the fuck was Forrest? Well, just a Confederate general, slave trader and an early leader of the Ku Klux Klan, which might be the three most racist jobs in the history of America and he did all of them.

But the governor is claiming that he’s not the one that wants to honor the harborer of the big, little and baby joker of racist work. Lee is blaming it all on the law.


Because Tennessee is in the South, they have a law that dates way back to 1971 that declares that the governor must issue “proclamations for six state holidays each year, including days for Nathan Bedford Forrest and Robert E. Lee,” CBS Nashville affiliate WTVF reported.

From CBS News:

According to the Tennessee code, the governor must declare January 19 as “Robert E. Lee Day”; February 12 as “Abraham Lincoln Day”; March 15 as “Andrew Jackson Day”; June 3 as “Memorial or Confederate Decoration Day”; July 13 as “Nathan Bedford Forrest Day”; and November 11, as “Veterans’ Day.”

“I signed the bill because the law requires that I do that and I haven’t looked at changing that law,” Lee said Thursday.

But here’s the thing, when Lee was asked if he thought the law should be changed, he wouldn’t answer. Needless to say, Tennessee Democrats hate all of this were hoping and pushing for a change in the law, but sadly, and racistly, all attempts have failed.

“This a reminder of the painful and hurtful crimes that were committed against black people,” Rep. Vincent Dixie of Nashville told WTVF.


“Now you’re signing a proclamation honoring the same people that fought to keep people that look like me, African Americans, in slavery,” Dixie added.

And if a damn day isn’t enough, there is a bust of Forrest in the state capitol and a big ass statue that can be seen from Interstate 65. CBS News notes that because God is a just and fair God that the big ass statue, which is on private property, is frequently defaced.

Senior Editor @ The Root, boxes outside my weight class, when they go low, you go lower.

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So I defended my city (Nashville) and my state (Tennessee obviously) in some comments of a previous Root story. Then this fucking shit happens and makes it even harder to defend against even though the majority of people here are not like this. Fuck you Bill Lee. This would be like Germany declaring a day for Heinrich Himmler or any of the other Nazis. And while I hate Nazi comparisons as they are typically way off and overdone, I feel this is an appropriate time for it as the Confederacy and Nazis both stood for the oppression and eradication of a group of people. Why people choose to celebrate the Confederacy is insane to me, and this is coming from a person who had family fight for the Confederacy in the Civil War. Where else do you hear about someone in the government pass an official day for the enemy combatants???? Take a look at the flag outside the capitol there Billy. It’s not the Confederate....