J.D.R. Hawkins

One bullet can make a man a hero… or a casualty.

Archive for the tag “Veterans”

Great Honor Ends in Sadness

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Beginning in the early twentieth century and continuing into the twenty-first, the Confederate Memorial Association in California established more than a dozen monuments and place-names to the Confederacy. They dedicated highways to Jefferson Davis, named schools for Robert E. Lee, and erected large memorials to the common Confederate soldier.

While one would not ordinarily associate California, far removed from the major military theaters of The War, with anything Confederate when The War erupted between North and South in 1861, a wave of secessionist scares swept across the West. Los Angeles County was the epicenter of California disunionism. Hundreds of Southern-sympathizing Angelenos fled east to join Confederate armies, while an even larger number remained to menace federal control over the region. They openly bullied and brawled with Union soldiers, joined secessionist secret societies, hurrahed Jefferson Davis and his generals, and voted into office the avowed enemies of the Lincoln administration. The threat became so dire that Union authorities constructed a large military garrison outside Los Angeles, and arrested a number of local secessionists, to prevent the region from joining the Confederacy.

The War was lost in 1865, but California’s leaders continued to nurture a nostalgia for the Old South. The editor of the leading Democratic newspaper in the state unapologetically lamented the South’s loss. California refused to ratify the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments, California was the only “free” state to reject both amendments during the Reconstruction era. In a belated, token gesture, the state “ratified” them in 1959 and 1962, respectively.

Attracted by California’s climate and its reactionary political orientation, thousands of Southerners migrated west in the decades after The War. There, they continued to honor the memory of their ancestors. Through hereditary organizations, reunions, and eventually the landscape itself, some hoped that the Old South would rise again in California.

Some of the most active memorial associations could be found in Los Angeles County. In 1925, the UDC erected the first major monument in the West, a six-foot stone tribute in what is now Hollywood Forever Cemetery. The monument saluted the wartime service of some 30 Confederate veterans, who migrated to Southern California after The War and took their final rest in the surrounding cemetery plot.

Hollywood

Many of those veterans had passed their last days in Dixie Manor, a Confederate rest home in San Gabriel, just outside L.A. Five hundred people gathered for the dedication of the home in April 1929. Until 1936, when the last of the residents died, the caretakers of Dixie Manor housed and fed these veterans, hosted reunions, and bestowed new medals for old service. It was the only such facility beyond the former Confederacy itself.

The UDC followed its Hollywood memorial with several smaller monuments to Jefferson Davis scattered across the state. Those tributes marked portions of the Jefferson Davis Highway, a transcontinental road system named for the former chieftain, stretching from Virginia to the Pacific coast. The Daughters erected the first of the tributes in San Diego in 1926. They even placed a large obelisk to Davis directly opposite the Ulysses S. Grant Hotel. Although opposition from Union army veterans resulted in the removal of the monument that same year, a plaque to Davis was restored to the San Diego plaza in 1956.

Several place-names literally put the Confederacy on the map in California. The town of Confederate Corners (née Springtown) was christened by a group of Southerners who settled in the area after The War. In San Diego and Long Beach, the name of Robert E. Lee graced two schools, while a school in East Los Angeles was named for filmmaker D.W. Griffith. Although not a Confederate veteran himself, Griffith’s The Birth of a Nation did more than any other production to rekindle the Confederate fire among a new generation of Americans.

Several giant sequoias were named for Robert E. Lee, including the fifth-largest tree in the world, located in Kings Canyon National Park. Jefferson Davis and Confederate general George E. Pickett each had a peak named in their honor in Alpine County.

Most of these memorialization efforts took place when The War was still a living memory. But California chapters of the UDC and Sons of Confederate Veterans remain active today. A recent register of the UDC listed 18 chapters in California-more than five times as many as could be found in any other “free state,” and even more than some former Southern states, including Missouri, Kentucky, and Arkansas.

The Sons of Confederate Veterans were erecting major memorials in California as recently as 2004. That’s when the newly-removed Orange County pillar went up, amid much fanfare from its patrons and supporters, proudly clad in Confederate attire for the occasion. Inscribed on the pedestal: “to honor the sacred memory of the pioneers who built Orange County after their valiant effort to defend the Cause of Southern Independence.”

Earlier this month, that monument, the last one standing in California, was taken down.

(Article courtesy of Dixie Heritage Newsletter, August 30, 2019 ed.)
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The UDC and America’s First Memorial Day

Caddo

MAY 23, 2019 — 

What many consider the first Memorial Day occurred April 25, 1866 in Columbus, Mississippi. The town’s Ladies Memorial Association, decorated the graves of both Union and Confederate soldiers in Friendship Cemetery.  In a nation trying to find a way to move on after a war that split the country, states, communities and even families, this gesture by these nobel women was welcomed as a way to lay the past to rest while honoring those who had fought on either side. Less than 30 years later this ladies group became the 34th chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy. The UDC will forever honor all of our country’s heroes with undying devotion and that our Confederate Dead have earned their rightful place to be included as America’s Veterans.

We should embrace our heritage as Americans. North and South, Black and White, Rich and Poor, our American heritage is the one thing we have in common and it is what defines us.  The monuments we have built to chronicle this heritage must be preserved so that those that come after us will see where we have been and where we must, as a unified people, go.  Protecting all monuments to American Veterans will defend our heritage.  Our monuments are reminders of our path forward.

(Courtesy of Caddo Confederate, Shreveport, LA, United States)

https://www.change.org/p/caddo-parish-commission-we-will-not-give-up/u/24604567?cs_tk=AgrqFs2n3M5yBfdF61wAAXicyyvNyQEABF8BvJaM27qx88Mn9RHwiosM050%3D&utm_campaign=06f32116a7834a1ca3b1d52342c2cd41&utm_medium=email&utm_source=petition_update&utm_term=cs

Noble Heroes Would Turn in Their Graves

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On May 2, 1863, during the Battle of Chancellorsville, General Robert E. Lee divided his army and sent Stonewall Jackson’s entire corps on a flanking march that routed the Union XI Corps. The battle was a Confederate victory, although the South lost one of its best generals as a result. Jackson was fired upon by his own men, who thought he and his entourage were the enemy. The accident took place at twilight, when visibility was poor, and even though Jackson’s men identified themselves, the North Carolinians who fired upon them thought they were lying. Jackson lost his arm as a result, and died several days later after contracting pneumonia. I wonder what Jackson would say now to all the political correctness going on in the country, primarily in his beloved South?

What everyone seems to be forgetting is that the Confederates fought for something they truly believed in, which was state’s rights. It had nothing to do with slavery, but now, everything honoring these brave men is under attack by politically correct activists and BLM protesters who claim the flags, monuments, and memorials are racist. I think this is BS!

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Dishonoring American veterans, specifically Confederate veterans, seems to be the norm these days. In Anniston, Alabama, an ordinance was passed that forbids flying the Confederate battle flag at General John Pelham’s statue on Quintard Boulevard. The city stated that the flags are racist and offensive to some people. So what? Everyone finds something offensive. Why cater to a few? That is what is commonly known as discrimination.

A group called the Southern Poverty Law Center released a report that details “publicly supported spaces dedicated to the Confederacy.” The report, titled “Whose Heritage? Public Symbols of the Confederacy,” is a play book that is being used by anti-Confederate groups to substantiate their cause to erase history. The book includes propaganda attempting to associate the Confederacy with racist ideology. It also includes a “community action guide” offering tips and suggestions on how to benefit those who want to destroy all memorials to Confederate heritage. And the Southern Baptist church has been requested to support the discontinuation of displaying Confederate flags. When will it end?

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Speaker of the House Paul Ryan was asked by a Georgetown student last week about the removal of the Mississippi State Flag from the U.S. Capitol. The student said it was “renewed, northern Republican reconstruction” and “the erasure of Southern symbols, as well as ostracization of Southern voters by the GOP.”

Ryan’s response was, “I never looked at it that way.” He continued by saying, “We discussed it, and I thought it was the right thing to do. This symbol does insult. This symbol, I think, does more to divide this country than to unify this country. But I got to tell you, if, in the Capitol, we’re going to have symbols, we’re going to have symbols that unify people, that don’t divide people, and that’s just the way we think.”

Wow. So sensitive! We had better seriously re-think who we elect this fall.

 

Southern Baptists asked to endorse an end to public display of Confederate battle flag
http://politics.blog.ajc.com/2016/04/24/southern-baptists-asked-to-endorse-an-end-to-public-display-of-confederate-battle-flag/

$PLC finds at least 1,500 symbols of the Confederacy in public spaces
http://freenorthcarolina.blogspot.com/2016/04/plc-finds-at-least-1500-symbols-of.html

 

 

 

More Attacks on the Confederate Battle Flag

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Last Saturday, members of the KKK decided to hold a demonstration at Stone Mountain in Georgia, and called it “White Lives Matter.” I don’t condone racism on any level, but the Black Lives Matter movement is definitely racist. However, holding a white power rally and letting the public know about it ahead of time is only asking for trouble. That’s exactly what happened. A group known as All Out ATL protested the rally by blocking entrances to the park and throwing fireworks and rocks at police. Seven people were arrested, and attractions at the park were cancelled for the day.

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The rally was held in retaliation for Georgia’s decision to discontinue Confederate Memorial Day, which has been held on the fourth Monday of April for years. Instead, the state calendar declared the day simply as a state holiday. Georgia’s Governor Nathan Deal decided to do away with a day honoring Civil War veterans, as well as a state holiday celebrating Robert E. Lee’s birthday.

Deal said the change was meant to “show that we are a state that has come a very long way.” Really, Governor? A very long way from what? From standing up for something honorable and traditional, and instead caving in to political correctness?

“We are tolerant of a lot of things,” Deal said. “But we will also protect our heritage,” he said, adding: “This was not one of those areas where I thought it was necessary to keep those labels associated with the holiday.”

It seems to me that, if you start chipping away, soon everything will erode. I have to agree with the Sons of Confederate Veterans, who said Deal’s changes were “an act of dishonor.”

Just to clarify, this demonstration had nothing to do with Confederate Memorial Day, although some news outlets have wrongly coincided this white supremacy event with the Confederate flag and the Confederacy as a whole.

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Meanwhile, yesterday in Montgomery, Alabama, a peaceful Confederate Memorial Day observation turned ugly when protesters showed up to disrupt the activities. Some showed up with guns but were finally backed down by police. Two people were arrested for firearms.

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What is this country coming to? It’s appalling that peaceful citizens can’t hold memorials for their ancestors without being harassed and intimidated by racially festering radical special interest groups. Something needs to change, and fast. Tolerance and understanding, along with education, is the key.

http://politics.blog.ajc.com/2016/04/25/why-today-is-no-longer-confederate-memorial-day-in-georgia/

http://m.startribune.com/end-to-confederate-holidays-creates-furor-in-georgia/321107431/?section=nation

https://www.rt.com/usa/340771-confederate-rallies-kkk-georgia/

http://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/2016/04/2_protestors_arrested_for_fire.html

 

 

Students Stick to Their Guns (Or Rather, Their Flag)

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Lately, I’ve been posting about all the anti-Confederate sentiment that has been sweeping the country since last summer when some complete lunatic went on a shooting spree at a church attended mostly by black people. The idiot posed with the Confederate Battle Flag on a social media website. Since then, flags, monuments, street names, and anything honoring Confederate war veterans has come under attack. The following is an article that I found interesting. Although the political elite and certain ethnic groups have taken it upon themselves to erase history and label all things Confederate as “racist,” some people still have the common sense to stand up for their rights and what they believe in.

Virginia, high school student rally in support of the Confederate Flag
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After school administrators at Staunton River High School in Montea, Virginia, enforced its policy, telling students that the Confederate flag was banned from vehicles in the school’s parking lot, a group of students organized to sponsor a parade of cars emblazoned with the flag to express their First Amendment rights.

According to WDBJ, CBS Channel 7, students Chas Goodson and Zachary Barton were told to leave their flags at home but felt the school was attempting to shut down their Constitutional right to free expression.

“We’re doing all of this to stand up for our First Amendment rights,” Goodson told the media.

The pair of students said they outfitted their vehicles with the Confederate symbol in memory of recently-passed country music legend Merle Haggard but were confronted by school administrators over the flags.

The pair also noted their ancestors served in the WBTS and the flag was a nod to their ancestry.

“We are very proud of our heritage and we want to be able to show it,” Barton told Channel 7. “We were given our First Amendment right for a reason and we want to be able to use it.”

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School administrations hastened to claim they have no intention of stomping on anyone’s First Amendment rights…..large banners and flags had already been banned on vehicles in the school parking lot, even if they are large U.S. flags.

But the students who organized the parade of autos said their response isn’t over. Students and parents also went to the campus and marched with their flags too, some representing a group called “Battle Flag Rally for Freedom.”

“It’s not about hate. It’s about the heritage,” said Jason Wright, a Staunton River High student. “When schools try to take away our American flags and stuff and tell us we can’t fly them at school, that’s not right.”

The students say they intend to rally again sometime next week.

The “Battle Flag Rally for Freedom” group has a Facebook page where they describe themselves as a peaceful group.

“We promote peaceful rallies for the support of Confederate and American values. We support the Constitution of the Confederacy & the U.S.A. no hate.”

(Article Courtesy of Southern Heritage News & Views, April 11, 2016 ed.)

I Find This Despicable

 

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Recently, I read a letter to the editor about how war veterans are being discriminated against. I’m not referring to our present veterans, but instead, veterans who fought in the Civil War, and more specifically Confederate veterans. I find this completely unacceptable that the Confederate battle flag cannot be flown over these graves because the current political climate forbids it. The Confederate battle flag is the flag these veterans fought under. These vets were designated as U.S. veterans years ago, so why aren’t they shown the same respect as veterans who fought in other wars? The letter is as follows:

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Veteran Discrimination at Crown Hill Cemetery

In 1931 the War Department had 1,616 Confederate American soldiers removed from Greenlawn Cemetery to Crown Hill Cemetery, Indianapolis, Indiana. These soldiers represent nearly all of the Confederate States of America. In this relocation, the Confederate American soldiers were buried not individually but rather in a “mass grave.” These soldiers died as prisoners of war in Indianapolis at Camp Morton.

April of each year the Sons of Confederate Veterans honor these American veterans with a public ceremony and wreath placement. In past years the grave site was decorated with Confederate American flags (the American flags under which these veterans served and died). This year the Indiana Division Sons of Confederate Veterans are prohibited by the Cemetery from the display of the Confederate American Flag or any other Confederate American symbol.

In our opinion there should be equal rights for all American veterans. Confederate American veterans have been recognized by Congress as “American Veterans” and should have all rights and honors consistent to their service — including the display the American flag under which they served and died. To deny this right is discrimination. In this age, it is important that we all coexist without discrimination and bigotry.

We therefore call upon Crown Hill Cemetery, Indianapolis, Indiana to allow all American veterans to be honored with the proper placement of the American flags and symbols under which they served and died.

If you agree that there should be equal rights for all American veterans, perhaps you could write a strong but polite note to the cemetery and ask that they allow equal rights for all veterans — which includes the prominent placement of the colors under which they served and died. The cemetery address is:

Crown Hill Cemetery
700 West 38th Street
Indianapolis, IN 46208

Respectfully,

Ray L. Parker
Chaplain-in-Chief
Sons of Confederate Veterans

 

(Courtesy Southern Heritage News & Views, 3-28-16 ed.)

April is Confederate Heritage Month

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Today marks the start of Confederate Heritage Month. April was originally chosen because Confederate Memorial Day is usually celebrated during the month. Seven Southern states (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas and Virginia) historically designated the month as a time to honor their Confederate ancestors, but due to recent racial climates, some states have rescinded from acknowledging this designation. Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant recently signed a declaration proclaiming April as Confederate Heritage Month.

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This designation has been in place for years, but this year, it has become even more controversial, due to the murderous rampage of one lunatic who shot innocent black church goers and had the audacity to wave the Confederate flag beforehand. Since then, the media circus has decided to blame the Confederate battle flag for this atrocity. The hysteria has spread to attacking monuments and other artifacts honoring Confederate veterans and heroes, some of which have been in existence for over a century. Is it a scapegoat, or a sign of the times of how dumbed down this society has become?

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Let me set the record straight. Confederate soldiers did not fight to preserve slavery. Most could have cared less. They were fighting to save their homes. The war became an issue of slavery only after President Lincoln knew the North was losing the war and decided to make it about a moral issue. In other words, it was about politics. Those statues you see of General Lee, Jefferson Davis and Nathan Bedford Forrest are there to honor the men who tried in vain to preserve the Confederacy. Forrest’s ex-slaves so adored him that they fought under his leadership. Lee set his inherited slaves free prior to the war. And Davis never wanted to become president of the Confederacy because he had the foresight to see the bloodbath that was about to happen. They all fought in honor of the South.

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In lieu of the assaults now taking place on Confederate flags, memorials, and monuments, I would like to stress that these items do not belong in dusty museums, hidden away from the modern world. They also do not belong to random citizens who think they have the right to vandalize them. These are memorials to America’s war veterans. Sorry if some don’t agree with what they perceive was the reason for the war. I don’t agree with every reason this country has ever gotten involved in a war or conflict, but you don’t see me spray painting the Vietnam Wall or the Korean War Memorial (BTW, my father was a veteran of that war). Compassion, understanding and knowledge are what is needed to accept why soldiers fought for the Confederacy. Times have changed. We must take that into account in order to comprehend what they believed in and realize how honorable they truly were.

http://www.cnn.com/2016/02/25/politics/mississippi-confederate-heritage-month/

On the Bright Side…

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I know I’ve been posting a lot lately about anti-Confederate sentiment, or Confederate cleansing as I like to call it. However, there are a few bright spots here and there around the country where people are getting tired of all the political correctness and have chosen to keep the Confederate battle flag and other symbols. After receiving criticism, the police department in Gettysburg, South Dakota, chose to keep its symbol, which pictures the American flag and the Confederate battle flag together. The small town was founded by Civil War veterans who fought in the Battle of Gettysburg, and that is how the design originated.

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In Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, the Sons of Confederate Veterans will sponsor a Confederate Flag Day to honor Southern history. The gathering will be held at the Farnsworth House Inn off Baltimore Street on March 5, from 2-4 p.m.

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“We as the sons revere the history of our families of the South and of America, and with that we wish to keep our history alive and our heritage along with that,” said Gary Casteel of the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

Critics of the flag, including Greater Harrisburg NAACP president Stanley Lawson, say our history of slavery is nothing to celebrate. “The Confederate flag does not unite the country, it divides the country,” Lawson said. “I think this time in our history we need to be together.”

“The Confederate flag may have done some nasty things, so did the American Flag, so why don’t we take them both down? Why don’t we destroy both of them and turn our backs on them?” Casteel said. “It’s simple. We are Americans. We have the right to choose to like or dislike. The right way is to accept and move and learn by it.”

Dishonoring the Honorable

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It seems every day of the year has been designated for something. Today is Play Tennis Day, Banana Bread Day, Curling is Cool Day, and International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day. But now, a day that has been designated as Confederate Memorial Day, which has been celebrated in the South for centuries, is under attack. Georgia State Senator Vincent Fort has authored a bill that aims to erase all Confederate holidays. Senator Fort is all for impeding the 2nd Amendment of the Constitution, and now he is attacking a day that has been set aside to honor Confederate veterans.

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Lest I remind Senator Fort that Confederate vets are American vets. Eradicating a memorial day in their honor is nothing less that disrespectful and despicable. State Senate Bill 294 in the Georgia State Legislature should be opposed at all costs. The Bill reads:

To amend Chapter 4 of Title 1 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to holidays and observances, so as to revise the public and legal holidays recognized by the State of Georgia; to prohibit the recognition of public and legal holidays honoring, recognizing, observing, or celebrating the Confederate States of America, its history, or the military or political leaders thereof of the Civil War; to repeal the observing of Confederate History and Heritage Month.

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It amazes me that an observance like Confederate Memorial Day should be under attack, when other ridiculous days are okay. Do we really need to honor banana bread and dog biscuits? Really? I think it is our responsibility as U.S. citizens to not allow such attacks on sacred entities like our veterans, and when they occur, to do something about it. My father was a veteran (Marine), and I would be livid if someone wanted to do away with a plaque, monument, or holiday that was set aside to celebrate him. Senator Fort should be ashamed of himself.

http://gascv.org/bill-introduced-to-erase-confederate-memorial-day/

Georgia Under Fire

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Not surprisingly to me, all things Confederate have fallen under attack. This was prompted by the shootings at a black church last year by a racist lunatic who posed in a picture with the Confederate battle flag. It seems this was all it took to spark a wildfire of attacks on Southern heritage and history, using the excuse of racism as a cloak to destroy these treasures and force a hateful message of cultural cleansing on everyone. In Georgia, the following has been targeted:

The Chattooga County Commissioner has the flag display removed from the Confederate Monument on the County Courthouse grounds.

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The Georgia Department of Revenue pulls the Georgia Division, SCV specialty tags for all tag offices and halts the sale of the tags.
NAACP attempts to have the Bullock County Confederate Monument removed from the Courthouse grounds.
NAACP attempts to have the Jasper County Confederate Monument removed from the Courthouse grounds in Monticello.
NAACP and past City of Macon mayor calls for the removal of the Bibb County Confederate Monument in Macon to be removed.
Governor Nathan Deal has Robert E. Lee and Confederate Memorial Day removed from the State Calendar.

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The NAACP and the SCLC call for the removal of the Confederate Memorial carvings from Stone Mountain.
Liberal Activist in Rabun County attempts to remove the flag display from the Confederate Monument in Clayton, Georgia.
Representative DaLawn Jones of district 62, files House Bill 760 that would change Stone Mountain from being a memorial to the Confederacy and give the authority to state agencies to define and change monuments if they deem them inappropriate.
State Senator Vincent Fort of Atlanta files Senate Bill 294 that prohibits the recognition of public and legal holidays honoring, recognizing, observing, or celebrating the Confederate States of America, its history, or the military or political leaders thereof or the Civil War; to repeal the observing of Confederate History and Heritage Month.

All these attacks are nothing less than alarming and disrespectful. Lest I remind these politically correct activists that the items listed above are in honor of American veterans. Regardless of what side of the Civil War they fought for, they were designated as U.S. veterans decades ago. To try and take away the honor they earned and deserve is nothing less than shameful and selfish.

House Bill 50 has been filed in support of “protecting government statues, monuments, plaques, banners, and other commemorative symbols; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.” To read House Bill 50, check out:

http://files.ctctcdn.com/c6653e36501/948f936e-0920-40cb-9484-4458ec40fe3a.pdf

 

 

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