As has been seen in the newspaper recently, with the Sesquicentennial upon us, SCV members and others in many states have been attempting to commemorate this significant and important milestone in history with vehicle license plates emblazoned with the SCV or Confederate emblems. Some state legislators in their astounding and prejudiced ignorance continue to maintain that the Confederate Battle Flag is a symbol of hatred and oppression and should not be placed on these license plates. A concerted effort by SCV members should be made to contact these politicians and demand that these plates honoring these true Confederate patriots and libertarians be made available. Here is an open letter sent to one such vocal misinformed Florida Congress-woman.
I read with disappointment your statements and position regarding the attempt by John Adams to have a Confederate Heritage license plate created and made available for purchase by Florida drivers for their personal automobiles. His and the federal judge's position that such plates are protected under freedom of speech is a Constitutional question for which you have no legal standing to object. Your ignorant objections on the grounds that you ignorantly believe that the Confederate battle flag stands for oppression and racism to ignorant people just exemplifies your ignorance. My ancestors fought for the Confederate States of America and I believe, thousands of informed educated Sons of Confederate Veterans members, and other potential Florida tourists similarly believe that the flags of the Confederate States of America including the Battle Flag were raised and carried by people defending their homeland against an unConstitutional invasion of aggressors attempting to force the Confederate States back into a Union from which they legally seceded. My forefathers who fought for the South were not slave owners and to infer that they would risk their lives to defend their neighbors legal right (upheld by the United States Supreme Court at that time in our history) to own slaves is preposterous. I can understand why blacks like yourselves who have not been otherwise educated to the true history of the War Between the States might believe that the Northern states attacked the South in a grand crusade to emancipate the slaves in the South but that would ignorantly ignore the historical facts of the period. Lincoln who has been exposed as the most tyrannical President in the history of our country but who the ignorant masses cling to as some mighty moral emancipator provides the following personal quotes to frame the root cause for the conflict - "Free them and make them politically and socially our equals? My own feelings will not admit of this." Or how about, "There is no right and ought to be no inclination in the people of the free States to enter into the slave States and interfere with the question of slavery at all." Or maybe, "It does not follow that social and political equality between whites and blacks must be incorporated because slavery must not." Hmm, let's try, "It is nothing but a miserable perversion of what I have said to assume that I have declared Missouri or any other slave State shall emancipate her slaves. I have proposed no such thing." Or from the Lincoln Memorial itself, "My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union and it (is) not either to save or destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves, I would do it." Ah, so the Emancipation Proclamation was a ploy to gain political favor and advantage to continue the bloodiest war in our history. The War Between the States and the flags which flew over the Confederate lines on the battlefields of that terrible struggle represent a struggle of these Confederate States to uphold the soverign rights guaranteed them originally when joining the Union to secede as a final recourse against an over reaching overburdening federal government which had imposed unfair tariffs penalizing the South's economy and which refused to lose the South's wealth and income should those States secede. Follow the money - as Lincoln also said, "I say that we must not interfere with the institution of slavery in the states where it exists because the constitution forbids it and the general welfare does not require us to do so." Ol' U.S.Grant was a slave owner. Robert E. Lee, not. Many in the South believed the institution to be morally repugnant but for those who profitted, they profitted for the good of Lincoln's pocket books and they were only product's of their time in history. Don't Monday morning or 21st century quarterback the morality of these God fearing righteous people who in actuality need only have referred to the Bible for historical justification of and blessing for the institution of slavery. Indeed, if you count yourself a Christian, you probably have these plantation owners to thank for instilling in your forebears these Christian principles. The institution of slavery was widely recognized and bound anyway to have run it's course in American history and would be replaced by the mechanized productivity of the industrial revolution within a few short decades so please don't ignorantly maintain that 600,000 people died in a struggle based on what amounts to a moot point. Please study your history and hopefully with an open mind you will discover that the true patriots and God fearing brave defenders of liberty and States Rights were the citizens of the Confederate States of America who proudly flew those banners including the Battle Flag. I am very proud of my given names and proud that my great great grandfathers fought alongside these great Confederate Cavalry officers and I will fly the Confederate Battle Flag from my home and on my vehicle's bumper whether it be on a license plate or on a sticker to proclaim my undying admiration for the honor and glory with which they were Confederate Veterans.
Regards, Stuart Forrest Waldo, SCV Camp 1524