Sunday, April 20, 2014

Will have questions for Thomas Y. Hiter about the SCV

Dr. Hiter is head of the 2016 Vision program at the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) which is defining what the SCV is. In his letter to me has the following sentences:
"We are more than willing to enter into a dialog with you or anybody else at any time concerning the Confederate solider; that is our charge."
"If you have questions concerning our stand on race, history, or the Confederate soldier, why not ask us?"
"We will answer anybody's questions; we will enter into public debate."
Hiter also criticizes me conducting my letter campaign "instead" of asking questions of the SCV.

So I do have some questions regarding the SCV and I do plan on utilizing this opportunity to learn about the SCV.

I did some brainstorming this morning and came up with 91 questions or topics on which to ask questions. With this unique opportunity I wanted to think about some questions regarding the SCV regarding its identity, history, and how they conceive of historical memory. There are some particular questions about race and racism, but there are broader questions. Let me list here three of them that people might not think to ask.

1. Why is the SCV restricted to persons descended from Confederates? If a person has a positive view of the Confederacy why not have them be members instead of auxiliary members? What is the necessity of being a descendant? Is the SCV setting themselves up, intentionally or unintentionally, as a hereditary cast of Southerners who are more southern than others?

2. Why only male members? This is the 21st century and not the early 20th century. True the name is Sons of Confederate Veterans, but names can be changed. The SCV has changed its name before. The SCV allows a person to join with proof being a descendant and paying dues. The UDC has more restrictive policies in which you have to be asked in or have a sponsor. The UDC isn't an alternative, but even if they were, why not open up to women instead of confining them to an auxiliary group The Order of the Confederate Rose?

3. The original name of the SCV was the United Sons of Confederate Veterans similar to the names United Daughters of the Confederacy and United Confederate Veterans. Why did the USCV drop "United" from their name?

I have other questions. Sometimes people just assume they know the answer. In other cases no one thinks to ask a question about something, how ever things are now, the person takes them as a given. I think I will have a core set of ten questions, but it might be more.

I have not as of the time of this posting heard back from Dr. Hiter.


Thursday, April 17, 2014

Dr. Thomas Y. Hiter, former head of the Sons of Confederate Veterans Heritage Defense writes me a letter.

I received a letter today, 4/17/14, from Dr. Thomas Y. Hiter, former head of the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) Heritage Defense. I am reading it this coming weekend April 19, 20, 2014.

I have emailed him today acknowledging the receipt of the letter and asking to be able to publish his letter along with my response. I don't want to Mr. Hiter to the claim that I have quoted him out of context or quoted too much of his letter.

I will be publishing online a response to his letter regardless.





Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Neo-Confederate married religious leader Doug Phillips sued for sexually abusing another woman.

The Vision Forum of Doug Phillips is shut down. The website http://www.visionforum.com/  has the message, "Thank You for 15 Years" and notifying that they are shutting down. You can download the catalog covers of their catalogs of the 15 years. I have many of their catalogs. They are really something to read. Knowing now of this scandal retrospectively the sections on "Beautiful Girlhood" strike me as creepy.

Why might The Vision Forum be shutting down? This story from the Christian Post explains what is happening with Doug Phillips. http://www.christianpost.com/news/woman-files-lawsuit-accusing-vision-forum-founder-doug-phillips-of-treating-her-as-personal-sex-object-118005/

The Vision Forum ministry has this message on its closure:

http://www.visionforumministries.org/issues/news_and_reports/the_closing_of_vision_forum_mi.aspx

This is a link to an article explaining Doug Phillips' Confederate interests. http://earlyamericanists.com/2013/11/20/godly-heritage-and-plantation-chic-the-case-of-vision-forum/

Doug Phillips is a leader in what the members of the movement call the "Quiverfull" movement. "Quiverfull" movement members reject contraception and try to have as many children as possible. I think the reader can figure out what the "quiver" is and of what it is full.


Monday, April 14, 2014

"the Confederacy's central aim: to preserve (as Barr puts it) 'the right to own, exploit, and rape African Americans and their descendants forever.'"

Michael Burlingame wrote a very good dust jacket paragraph for "Loathing Lincoln" by John Barr.

“Paradoxically, America’s most revered president has also been its most reviled. As John McKee Barr shows in this meticulous, comprehensive survey of the anti-Lincoln tradition, detractors of the Rail-splitter have been a variegated crowd of strange bedfellows: white supremacists, Black Panthers, libertarians, neo-Confederates, agrarian romantics, Southern chauvinists, states’ rights advocates, and anti-imperialists, among others. Barr describes and analyzes their arguments, demonstrating that many of Lincoln’s critics have overlooked (or denied) the Confederacy’s central aim: to preserve (as Barr puts it) ‘the right to own, exploit, and rape African Americans and their descendants—forever.’”—Michael Burlingame, Chancellor Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies, University of Illinois–Springfield - See more at: http://lsupress.org/books/detail/loathing-lincoln/#sthash.ROB4HjUS.dpuf

Sunday, April 06, 2014

John Barr speaking engagement about book "Loathing Lincoln" at Lonestar College

At Lonestar-Kingwood a book signing will be held on campus on Tuesday, April 22, at 12:30 p.m. at the CLA Building Room 114.

The details of the speaking engagement are at this link:

http://www.lonestar.edu/news/lsc-kingwood-history-professor-authors-new-book-on-lincoln.htm

Other Barr speaking engagements can be found with the tag John Barr and at these blog postings.

This is the posting about his New York City speaking engagement.
http://newtknight.blogspot.com/2014/04/john-barr-speaks-on-lincoln-haters-in.html#.U0ICW_ldWSo

This is the posting about the Houston speaking engagement and the Chicago speaking engagement.
http://newtknight.blogspot.com/2014/03/john-barr-will-be-speaking-about-his.html#.U0ICefldWSp

Friday, April 04, 2014

John Barr speaks on Lincoln haters in New York City/ Author gives me a dedicated copy.

John Barr will be speaking in New York City July 9, 2014, 7:00 pm, at Bryant Park,

The schedule for the park is online here:

http://bryantpark.org/static/pdfs/events/springeventbrochure2014.pdf

I have blogged on his other speaking events.

http://newtknight.blogspot.com/2014/03/john-barr-will-be-speaking-about-his.html#.Uz8hUfldWSo

John's website is at: http://loathinglincoln.com/

It has been just started and parts are still under construction.

John Barr was so kind as to send me a copy of his book with a dedication written into it and with a kind note thanking me for my help, as well as a very kind acknowledgement.

For 20 years I have been compiling a record of the anti-Lincoln hysteria of the neo-Confederates, and I really am grateful that John Barr came along and was able to put the material to good use in his book. I owe him my thanks and have expressed my thanks to him.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Churches of the Confederacy web pages are updated

I have updated all the web pages that go with www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm.


Roman Catholic Diocese of Richmond Bishop's letter about neo-Confederates

I got a short letter from Most Rev. Francis X. DiLorenzo of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Richmond in Virginia.

I had written him about the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) and the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC). He writes that he knows of no such groups meeting at the Roman Catholic churches. Which is correct, I don't know of any either. The letter was passed to a staff member.

What is important is that know the Diocese of Richmond does know about the issue. They don't currently host any neo-Confederate groups, but being informed about the issue, I think they will make sure they don't host any in the future in order to avoid controversy. The letter also shows that they take the issue seriously enough to write me.

When the Episcopal church in the Richmond area give up the Confederacy the Roman Catholic church won't be an alternative.

I think that as more and more churches receive letters the word is going to get around about this issue. Church leaders can easily see that this is a mess that is much easier to avoid than getting yourself out of it.

I haven't heard back from the bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Dallas or the Diocese of Charleston. I am giving matters a couple months before the write Pope Francis.

I am still writing a lot of churches. Once I am done I will be writing social justice groups in the various denominations involved.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Public Broadcasting System is showing a series titled "The Abolitionists"

The Public Broadcasting System (PBS) is showing a series titled "The Abolitionists." The following link is to a web page about the series.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/films/abolitionists/

They have video clips at the web page and a wealth of information.

I think this is wonderful. They were courageous individuals who changed our nation and set it on the path of abolishing slavery.

Segments of the series are online at You Tube.

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=the+abolitionists&sm=1

I think that there is a cultural turning away from the "Gone With the Wind" mentality.

The abolitionists portrayed are, in order of appearance, Angelina Grimke', Frederick Douglass, William Lloyd Garrison, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and John Brown.

It will be interesting to see how the public judges churches that enable neo-Confederate groups, in contrasting their lack of courage and concern with the heroic abolitionists.


Thursday, March 27, 2014

John Barr will be speaking about his book, "Loathing Lincoln," at the Abraham Lincoln Book Store in Chicago, Brazos Bookstore in Houston

On April 14, 2014 John Barr will be speaking at the Brazos Book Store in Houston, Texas starting at 7pm.

The link to the event is http://www.brazosbookstore.com/event/john-barr-loathing-lincoln.

The book store is at 2421 Bissonnet St., Houston, Texas 77005-1451. The following is a link to a Google maps of the book store's location.

https://www.google.com/maps/place/2421+Bissonnet+St/@29.7251977,-95.4163249,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m2!3m1!1s0x8640c0f5677a6a2d:0x4419dc4720f65159


John Barr will be speaking about his book, "Loathing Lincoln," at the Abraham Lincoln book store in Chicago, Illinois on May 24, 2014 at Noon.

The link for the events at the Abraham Lincoln book store is at:

http://www.alincolnbookshop.com/html/events.htm

The address is 357 West Chicago Avenue - Chicago, IL 60654. Below is a google maps link for the location.

https://www.google.com/maps/place/357+W+Chicago+Ave/@41.8962414,-87.637954,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m2!3m1!1s0x880fd34ab0023cad:0x240ce9cd7dc78a53

John Barr is currently getting his blogs, Facebook page, website started and I will be blogging on them as soon as he gets them going.

More speaking engagements are planned and as soon as I know of them I will be blogging about them.

The situation is developing and Barr's book is getting strong interest.




Sunday, March 23, 2014

Breaking News: Neo-Confederate tries to win Anne Arundel County Democratic Party Committee seat. UPDATE:

I just was informed about this web page

http://www.betsybury.com/

If you go down the page you find out that Pastor David Whitney of the neo-Confederate Institute on the Constitution (IOTC) is running against her.

The IOTC web is http://www.theamericanview.com/

The web address is somewhat laughable since it really is the Confederate View.

Pastor Whitney is running for a Democratic Central Committee seat. The reason why this is a matter of concern is that people are generally fairly unaware of this office, the turn out can be very low, and it would be possible for a small group to win if the public was not alerted to the problem.

This article in the American Review of American Studies at the Univ. of Toronto gives a good idea of the religious beliefs of the neo-Confederate movement.

http://www.templeofdemocracy.com/ConfederateChristianNationalism.pdf

Worked today and got back and started to look into this further.

Pastor David Whitney doesn't like the Harlem Shake in an article where some Christian leaders express opposition to Christian students doing the Harlem Shake.

http://www.christianpost.com/news/have-wild-videos-of-christians-doing-the-harlem-shake-crossed-the-line-97713/

With that in mind I offer these www.youtube.com videos of students at Christian institutions doing the Harlem Shake. Horrors! Some of these Christian students seem to be having fun! Oh the ungodliness of it all. ;-).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LvwGiNyXvQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ea7seDz6H_E

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iu6vqDLwRqQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aF11jCXvkDs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lmSEMz67ybk



Saturday, March 22, 2014

The use of the term "flag flap" as revealing of the attitudes of the user

One of the frequently used phrases in reporting the news on the controversies regarding the use of the Confederate flag in public life is to use the phrase, "flag flap." This needs to be recognized as the editorial comment it is. The use of the phrase is a comment that the topic of controversy is trivial.

This dismissive tone is never taken in reporting holocaust deniers. You won't see an article titled or using the belittling phrases, "holocaust hassle," "history hiccup," "history hissyfit," or "holocaust flap."

Debates over American flag burning aren't dismissed as "Flag Flaps" either, but are reported as a serious issue.

Confederate identified governments and a Confederate identified landscape is a real issue. When a government body decides to use a Confederate flag or a place decides to use a Confederate flag they are defining who they are, their identity, and they are racializing the landscape. Attempting to achieve a Confederate identity or give a location a Confederate identity is a serious issue.

The trivializing language used for reporting Confederate flag controversies as opposed to controversies on the holocaust of the Jews is because, rightly so, we see Jewish people as being part of "us," and for many reporters, "African Americans" are still seen as "them." The use of the term "Flag flap" is revealing of the journalists' or writers most interior attitudes on race.

Also, I feel the constant use of the term "Flag Flap" is a means of defending the Confederate flag and symbols, by denigrating the opposition to them as being wrongly pre-occupied with triviality. The use of the term "flag flap" is a subtle defense of the status quo, thus a defense of the Confederate flag.

Wonders never cease, "Washington Post" Op-Ed argues that Democrats in the South should take a public stand against the Confederate flag

I was just astounded that the Washington Post ran this Op-Ed by Drew Westen at Emory University in Georgia arguing that the Democrats should take a public stand against the Confederate flag. Mudcat Sanders must be having a fit.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/how-georgia-democrats-should-confront-a-confederate-flag-license-plate/2014/03/21/7b8da8ac-add7-11e3-a49e-76adc9210f19_story.html

Writing about the Republican campaign strategy in the Georgia gubernatorial race:
This year, the strategy has taken the form of a debate about custom license plates — in particular, a Georgia license plate sporting a broad, bold display of the Confederate battle flag. Democrats have traditionally struggled to counter such race-baiting. And Republicans are wasting no time in running Southern pride and prejudice up the flagpole against the two most promising Democrats to run for statewide office in Georgia in a decade: Jason Carter, grandson of President Jimmy Carter and a candidate for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination; and Michelle Nunn, daughter of the popular Democratic senator Sam Nunn and a candidate for the U.S. Senate.
Westen argues to oppose this strategy the Democrats should:
Too often, Democrats have dealt with racial issues by avoiding them. Research shows that’s the wrong strategy, particularly in the South. Speaking directly about race allows our conscious values — which tend to be intolerant of racial intolerance, even in the heart of Dixie — to override our unconscious prejudices, which control our behavior when we’re not looking, or when other people aren’t, as in the voting booth. The best way to handle this kind of dog-whistle politics is to expose it for what it is.
Westen is right, the strategy of the Democrats had been to avoid the Confederate flag issue as much as possible in the hope of shaking loose a few extra white votes. Mudcat Sanders was a political consultant who argued for this position. In one article I read that his bed had a Confederate battle flag bed spread which is a sort of obvious and idiotic way of making a statement. (If some political operatives use dog whistles then Sanders was using a fog horn.) The Washington Post as a consequence of this policy and as a consequence of being the house publication of the Democratic party has avoided really critically examining the Lost Cause or arguing against the Lost Cause. I suppose also the Graham family that had owned the paper didn't want relatives or people at the club or acquaintances with Confederate ancestors and Lost Cause attitudes complaining either.

So I am so amazed to see this article. On the other hand I think that this change in attitude is confined to the Confederate battle flag and isn't intended to challenge the Lost Cause generally, but still it is a major shift for the Democrats in the South. Also, once you decide the Confederate flag isn't really desirable you are forced to engage the Lost Cause. The Democrats will be slow learners but I think they will learn.

For the Washington Post it certainly is a surprise. This is the third major article in the Post indicating a shift regarding the Lost Cause.

Not too long ago there was this Washington Post blog asking why Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson are in the Washington National Cathedral. This was known by a lot of people previously, but it wasn't commented on.I refer to the Post blog in this posting.

http://newtknight.blogspot.com/2013/12/washington-post-columnist-john-kelly.html#.Uy21TfldWSo

Then there is this Washington Post column by Colbert King likening the Republicans to the Confederacy.I refer to it at this posting.

http://newtknight.blogspot.com/2013/10/washington-post-columnist-colbert-king.html#.Uy21jfldWSo

I think some Democrats have figured out that there really isn't a reason to vote for them unless they represent a choice for the voters.

Former president Jimmy Carter is somewhat fond of the Confederacy and so it would be interesting to what extent Jason Carter will give up the Lost Cause or how he will frame the argument against the Confederate battle flag.

"Gawker" has article on League of the South

Gawker, an online news source, had an article on the League of the South. It is online here:

http://gawker.com/inside-the-american-id-chilling-with-the-south-s-new-s-1547070777

A reporter for Gawker went to a League of the South protest against immigration and Republican Florida U.S. Senator Marcio Rubio for his policies regarding immigration. The League of the South billboard with the word "SECEDE" has attracted local attention which is what billboards are designed to do, but in this case there is extra attention since you don't often see a billboard urging secession.

Link to League of the South web page on demonstration.  Link to Facebook page on demonstration.

Link to League of the South web page about the billboard.

What is of notice regarding the billboard is that the League of the South has the money to pay for it. Billboards cost a lot of money. I thought the League of the South was just a remnant of former self and would be just fading away over time. They have a physical headquarters also.  So they seem to be persisting, perhaps growing..

They also seem to have become activist group rather than a perpetual study committee.

Adam Weinstein also notes how the League of the South manages the media.
The way I met Hill was this: I started talking to Snuffy Smith with the Liberian flag, and three minutes later, Hill came urgently striding over like a recess teacher on the playground. "Media?" he asked. "Talk to me. Talk to me."
Michael Hill actually denied being neo-Confederate to the reporter. Which shows that neo-Confederates will say anything if it is expedient. Weinstein reports:

As suspect as that talk may sound, Hill insists his group is not neo-Confederate: "We're not so blind as to think that we can turn back the clock and have things the way that it was 100, 150 years ago, and we don't want to do that. We're men and women who live in the age that we've been placed, and we're not romantic dreamers of some idyllic past or something like that." 
Hill's Facebook page suggests otherwise. In late January, for example, he posted a note celebrating the birthdays of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. "[L]et us emulate them and continue the honorable cause that motivated these two noble Southern men—the survival, well being, and independence of the Southern people," he wrote.

The following day was MLK Day, so Hill added another thought. "Note: If you wish to honor Martin Luther King, Jr. please go elsewhere. He is not one of us," he wrote of the Atlanta-born Southern preacher.
The read learns that the neo-Confederate movement can be less than candid.

Weinstein reports Hill Facebook posting the next day where Hill makes his views clear: 
On this day when the racial propagandizing of America reaches it[s] ugly zenith, I offer a simple photo graph of Johannesburg, South Africa, in 1952 and ask you to contrast it with the same city today. Or with Detroit, Memphis, Birmingham, etc, etc. When will we stop believing lies and turn this situation around for the very preservation of our civilization?
Weinstein is perceptive enough to see how neo-Confederacy could have popular appeal and that people should not just laugh them off:
Perhaps this scene reinforces the League's reputation as a comical fringe element, a gaggle of old racist Lost Cause types who dream of the Confederate battle flag again gracing their statehouses, who lament the Union's retardation of their familial livelihoods. And their manhoods. "There were more men in America in 1776 than there are today," Hill recently wrote on Facebook. "[I]t can be changed, you know. Just 'man up,' as they say!"

But intellectual elites and newsmen caricature this movement at their own peril. One of the most famous Southern revivalists of the last century wrote a conservative manifesto titled "Ideas Have Consequences," and in America, in 2014, the League of the South's ideas are not without consequence.

Beyond its race-tinged Dixie jingoism, much of the League's public rhetoric is in line with a wider American attitude. It emphasizes truly small government—the dictatorship of the individual, the republic of the family, the overthrow of the cultural and bureaucratic forces that the League believes threaten our insular networks and affinity groups.

This dovetails not simply with neo-Confederacy and conservatism but with a broader, bipartisan disillusionment with government and mass media—the contemporary ethos that elevates selves and loved ones above the din of 308 million meatsticks screaming, stamping, belching, reaching nothing but the most tenuous consensus on anything enduring. Get government out of the way. Abolish artificial ties with strangers. Focus on the immediate, the personal, the deeply felt—"faith, family, and folk," as the League puts it.
In the recent decade we have seen neo-Confederate ideas slip into the mainstream such as nullification. Weinstein realizes that the neo-Confederate movement has a potential to be a serious problem. 

Richard Weaver who wrote "Ideas Have Consequences" also wrote a key founding book of the neo-Confederate movement, "The Southern Tradition at Bay," edited by M.E. Bradford and George Core. Core and Bradford explained in the book that Richard Weaver's conservative ideas were neo-Confederate ideas reformulated to appeal to broader audiences.

The article has, if I understand the indicators by it, 29,000+ readers and has been shared. So it does help people become aware of the neo-Confederate movement and be warned. However, it also helps the League of the South get new members.  However, I think that this article is overall good in that it is an accurate portrayal of the League of the South revealing that they have a racist agenda and also importantly that they try to not represent it to the media. Importantly, Weinstein sees that the neo-Confederate movement could have a broader appeal and is a potential menace. 


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Letter from the Archdiocese of San Antonio

I got a letter from the Archbishop of San Antonio. The letter opens with the following opening paragraph which was a quote as follows:
"Every type of discrimination, whether social or cultural, whether based on sex race, color, social condition, language or religion, is to be overcome and eradicated as contrary to God's intent." -- Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World (Guadium et Spes), 29." 
The Archbishop thanks me for the information that I have send and informs me that they will "do our best to never let our sanctuaries be co-opted by any message that stands against the truth of the Gospel of Christ." Doesn't exactly say that they won't let the Sons of Confederate Veterans meet at their churches.

However, as for the Dallas Diocese the Archbishop informs me that he doesn't have "pastorship of those parishes there." The Archdiocese of San Antonio includes Dallas so I don't understand how he doesn't have influence there as to policy. I will have to do a follow up letter.

I do appreciate knowing about "Gaudium et Spes," and will follow up with research concerning it. However a resolution or policy only is of real substance if it is implemented.

I have some more letters to write to Roman Catholic leaders in the United States then if not satisfactory I will be writing Pope Francis. I haven't heard back from the Diocese of Charleston and it has been some time, but I still need to wait for the replies from the Archdiocese of Baltimore and the Diocese of Richmond.


Sunday, March 16, 2014

United Daughters of the Confederacy realizes that they are an embarrassment to the churches

The United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) has realized that they are an embarrassment to the churches. They are going into stealth mode.

If you view this web page http://www.ncudc.org/2015GeneralConv.html today (3/16/2014) about the North Carolina Division of the UDC you will notice that they are planning on having a church service for their 2015 reunion at a church in downtown Raleigh, NC.

However, if you go to the Internet archive and view their web page as it was on Jan. 1, 2014:

https://web.archive.org/web/20131109190519/http://www.ncudc.org/2015GeneralConv.html

You would see that they are planning to have their memorial service at Edenton Street United Methodist Church.

I have a printed out Google Cache page showing that as late as Jan. 22, 2014 the web page mentioned Edenton Street United Methodist Church. http://esumc.org/

Edenton Street United Methodist Church also runs The Gathering which is at this link. http://estreetgathering.net/ They are current with the trends, they are multiracial, and it might be that they are sharing space occasionally with the UDC.

The Edenton Street United Methodist Church has a concert for Black History Month:  http://esumc.org/news-item/concert-for-black-history-month/ and they were listed as the church for the North Carolina Division UDC.

There is no reason that the UDC would hide the fact that they are meeting at the Edenton Street United Methodist Church unless they realized their accommodation by the Edenton Street United Methodist Church would be an embarrassment to the Edenton Street United Methodist Church.

It might be argued that the church name was dropped from the North Carolina UDC web page for the 2015 reunion so Ed Sebesta wouldn't know about it. Certainly that is one reason. But if the UDC's presence at the Edenton Street United Methodist Church wasn't embarrassing my writing to the church would have no effect and my being aware of this reunion at Edenton Street United Methodist Church would have no effect. If the Edenton Street United Methodist Church thought hosting the UDC was a good thing they would put it on their website.

There are two important things in this recent development.

1. The UDC has realized it is an embarrassment to churches. They are starting to pull the names of the churches from their schedules to spare the church embarrassment. The UDC is acknowledging that they are an embarrassment through their actions and demonstrating through their actions that they realize that a large fraction of the public has a negative perception of them and that their public association with a church would undermine the church's reputation. Also by keeping the name hidden of the church they plan on meeting at they communicate to the membership that they are undesirables.

2. The UDC has listed what churches they will be meeting at as one of the positive features of their conventions. If they stop listing the church they give up a selling point of the convention.

3. As they cover up their involvements with churches they start writing themselves out of the historical record.

At some point the UDC will be pulling the name of the churches from their published schedules for the upcoming conventions and won't be mentioning the churches in their reports for the convention.

Additionally once they start sneaking about to have their memorial services at a church they then make the church a collaborator. It can't be imagined that the church leadership would be unaware that the memorial service is being conducted in such a way to avoid pubic scrutiny as the church leadership observes that their church name is not listed on the UDC schedule and as the topic of churches' hosting neo-Confederate groups becomes more and more a matter for discussion among the public. The church leadership thus transitions from being an witting passive host to being an active supporter of the UDC.

Also, if something is being done covertly, secretly, isn't it a mystery, a subject of interest? Isn't their a potential of an expose'? Doesn't it become a dirty secret?

Also, if the UDC knows that there is a developing controversy over this matter, but they conceal it from the church they plan to meet at, how will the church feel when they find out that they were kept uninformed?

Has the Edenton United Methodist Church cancelled the North Carolina UDC memorial service at their church? I don't know. I got an unsolicited email from someone claiming to be a member of the church. Later he said that the church had cancelled, but the person wasn't using one of the church's email addresses. When I asked that there be confirmation by the church I didn't hear back. I emailed the same person at his official Edenton United Methodist Church email and I didn't hear back. So I sent a certified letter asking him to confirm the emails sent. So far haven't heard back but it is too soon to say whether I am going to hear back or not.

However, the North Carolina UDC convention website does mention that it is going to be  local church. If the UDC was actually rejected I think that neo-Confederate would be complaining all over the Internet.

If I don't hear back I am writing the staff of the church by certified mail. I will also be giving reasons why they shouldn't host the UDC.

At this time I can't say whether the North Carolina UDC convention will be happening at the Edenton Street United Methodist Church in 2015 or not, but I have I have a long time between now 2015 to find out.

So far I am not hearing much back from the churches except when they want to tell me they aren't involved, or won't be involved. Except in one case, I am not getting anyone defending the practice of hosting neo-Confederate groups. If the churches thought it was a good thing they would be defending it. They know it is a dirty secret also. (I will be blogging about the church leader who defended the practice.)

I will be blogging on the Edenton United Methodist Church matter as things develop.

I am already winning in this campaign. The campaign is documented at www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm.

Churches which host Children of the Confederacy national convention services added to Churches of the Confederacy web page

I have a table of churches which have hosted the Children of the Confederacy (CofC) which is an organization of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC).

It has been added to the main page tracking the campaign regarding churches enabling neo-Confederate groups.

http://www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm

The reporting on the national conventions of the Children of the Confederacy is a little uneven and so for some years it isn't known whether they had a church service and if so where.

The three denominations stand out: Episcopal Church, Presbyterian USA, and the United Methodist Church.

This upcoming year the Children of the Confederacy will be using the First Presbyterian Church of Texarkana, Texas.

http://www.firstprestexarkana.org/


Table of churches hosting neo-Confederate events update with more United Daughters of the Confederacy hostings

At http://www.templeofdemocracy.com/ChurchesHostingEvents.htm I added in several churches which are active in hosting United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) meetings.

With web pages being modified or pulled off line I don't know if in the future if I will be able to track what is happening. On the other hand if the neo-Confederates do go into some stealth mode it is just something they are doing, but if a church works with them to cover up that a neo-Confederate group is meeting at their church it is collusion.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

If you know of any churches hosting a neo-Confederate group contact me with documentation

If you know of any church that is hosting a neo-Confederate group please contact me by email.

I won't list them as having hosted a neo-Confederate group until I can confirm it with some type of documentation. It might be an announcement on a neo-Confederate web page or news article in the local paper or some other source of information that can corroborate that a neo-Confederate group is being hosted by a local church.

If you have such documentation please provide in your email the links to the page. I don't want to open any attachments. However, even if you don't have documentation contact me anyways. I have ways of searching the Internet and Internet archives to track down things.

I am interested in any type of hosting by the church. It can be a memorial service for a United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) or Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) convention, it might be a workshop or business meeting, or local monthly chapter or camp meetings, or some other even such as a Confederate Memorial Day service. In case of doubt send me an email and I can decide.

I am writing each church to double check whether they are actually hosting a neo-Confederate group.

The churches which I have already documented as hosting neo-Confederate groups are in an online table at:

www.templeofdemocracy.com/ChurchesHostingEvents.htm


Sunday, March 09, 2014

Writing and researching. Children of the Confederacy

Spent much of the day finding out which churches hosting the Children of the Confederacy. Entered into EXCEL. Have some more work to do before it goes online. However, again the Episcopalians come out as a leading hosting denomination of neo-Confederates.

Wrote four more religious leaders, two in Dallas and two in Richmond. There are still some churches to write. By the end of March though I should be done writing churches. I am going to switch to writing religious social justice organizations, religious publications, civil rights groups, newspapers, etc.

I am not finding any churches or religious groups that want to defend the Confederacy or their association with neo-Confederate groups. It seems their strategy is to avoid discussing the matter and hope that it doesn't come before the public.

By end of next week I plan on having www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm updated with the new letters and information.


Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Planning Christmas Day picket in Dallas of neo-Confederate hosting denomination

I will be planning on a Christmas Day picket in Dallas, TX of a denomination which continues to enable neo-Confederacy.

In addition starting this Summer I will want to have pickets of churches enabling neo-Confederates in NYC, DC, and Richmond. See the following Facebook page.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Anti-Neo-Confederate-Action/122398324590629


Dr. Hayes-Bautista Op-Ed about Cinco de Mayo's American origins as an anti-Confederate holiday in the "Los Angeles Times."

Dr. Hayes-Bautista has an Op-Ed about Cinco de Mayo's American origins as an anti-Confederate holiday in the March 4, 2014 Los Angeles Times. The Link is:

http://www.latimes.com/opinion/commentary/la-oe-hayes-bautista-cinco-de-mayo-20140305,0,4208043.story#axzz2v8VSmr5z

The great thing about this is that it will inform a great many people that Cinco de Mayo is a patriotic American holiday and an anti-Confederate holiday. The popularity of Cinco de Mayo will work to increase the unpopularity of the Confederacy.

I was in Los Angeles for an exhibition on Cinco de Mayo. The following is my blog on the visit with pictures.

http://newtknight.blogspot.com/2012/09/cinco-de-mayo-civil-war-exhibit-pictures.html#.Uxe81_ldWSo

Additionally there is a lecture by Dr. Hayes-Bautista on video in the blog posting. I have other blog postings on Cinco de Mayo, use "cinco" and search my blog.

I am hoping that as Cinco de Mayo becomes popularly known as an anti-Confederate holiday, the Roman Catholic churches will be less likely to host neo-Confederate groups.

Monday, March 03, 2014

"12 Years a Slave" movie wins "Best Picture" Oscar. UPDATED: Additional material has been added.

From the Los Angeles Times, "12 Years a Slave" movie wins "Best Picture" Oscar.

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/envelope/moviesnow/la-et-mn-oscars-2014-academy-awards,0,6353563.story#axzz2utpQbMQk

The Gone With The Wind view of slavery seems to be gone with the wind. All the years of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) trying to portray slavery as somehow justifiable is undone.

Further the movie "12 Years a Slave" is going to be used in classrooms to teach students about slavery.

http://entertainment.time.com/2014/02/24/12-years-a-slave-will-be-taught-in-schools/

The following is a trailer for the movie.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z02Ie8wKKRg

Double click to get full view.



You can get a PDF of the original book here.
https://ia600500.us.archive.org/5/items/12yearsaslave00nortrich/12yearsaslave00nortrich.pdf

This is a "New York Times" article about the book from 161 years ago.

http://gawker.com/this-is-the-161-year-old-new-york-times-article-about-1-1535199589

A good article worth reading about kidnapping of free African Americans in Antebellum New York City to be sold into slavery.

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/untold-history-beneath-12-years-article-1.1706946

The response of the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) will likely to be either to wail and moan that it is an attack on the South, or shift through the movie and find some minor or minute technical error to make the claim that the whole movie is is historically inaccurate, or to make up some historical claim which they will represent as a historical error to claim that the whole movie is historically inaccurate.

Primarily though they will bring up a lot of historical claims which don't really relate to the movie but will serve as a distraction and misdirection away from the substance of the movie, but which they will claim some how discredits the movie.

A particular way they will attack the film without discussing the contents will be to focus on attacking Hollywood and the film as a product of Hollywood.

H.K. Edgerton will be showcased with the idea, that if any black person rejects the movie than the it is okay for the SCV members to reject it also for whatever reasons that might motivate them.

Of course there could be just a lot of ranting and raving too.

Maybe St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Richmond should get a copy and review it.

Perhaps I will suggest that the leadership of the United Methodist Church (UMC) consider viewing it before they continue to host the UDC and SCV. Maybe the UMC will give up the Confederacy. www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm.


Sunday, March 02, 2014

More web pages disappear, Alabama Div. Sons of Confederate Veterans deletes major web page in response to Church writing campaign

I was looking for www.aladivscv.com/camps.htm on the Internet for Alabama Division Sons of Confederate Veterans camp meeting locations. I couldn't find it.

It is archived at https://web.archive.org/web/20130818164435/http://aladivscv.com/camps.htm. You will notice that there are tabs at the bottom for each section of Alabama.

You can see it is an extensive list of where Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) camps meeting in Alabama including many churches. When it was on the Internet I printed it out with URL and date stamps on each page for my records.

When I inquired on Facebook, Grand Bay First United Methodist Church had told me that the SCV hadn't met at their church for some time and I had told them it was listed that they did and gave them the URL.

I don't know if it is true or not that the SCV no longer meets there. I will have to make inquiries.

It will be a major change if the SCV meetings in churches are done in secret. If in the future that becomes the practice than any church hosting them is in collusion. If in the future that becomes the practice the SCV can't but feel that they are a potential embarrassment to a church at which they meet.


Saturday, March 01, 2014

Decatur United Methodist Church and the Sons of Confederate Veterans, collusion?

The First United Methodist Church of Decatur had on their web page www.decaturmethodist.org a listing for the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) in their calendar.  Sometime between the Jan. 7, 2014 Google Cache snap shot and today 3/1/2014 the SCV regular meeting disappeared from their schedule.

As of today 3/1/2014 the listing is still in the Google cache. It won't be there for long.

http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:97_kwvCmz1wJ:www.decaturmethodist.org/templates/System/details.asp%3Fid%3D58517%26PG%3DEvents%26CID%3D1347159%26rDate%3D2014-01-14+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

However, the calendar with the listing of the SCV is at www.archive.org.

https://web.archive.org/web/20131219084143/http://decaturmethodist.org/templates/System/details.asp?id=58517&PG=events&RecordType=&pkg=

You will have to wait a bit while it loads.

It seems that the First United Methodist Church of Decatur is covering up the fact that they let the SCV use the Wesley Center.

The First United Methodist Church of Decatur has been careless and hasn't entirely covered its tracks.
http://www.decaturmethodist.org/clientimages/58517/building%20use%20guidelines.pdf

https://web.archive.org/web/20140301200024/http://www.decaturmethodist.org/clientimages/58517/building%20use%20guidelines.pdf

The SCV is still listing the First United Methodist Church of Decatur as a meeting place.

http://www.asjcampscv983.org/history.htm

http://www.asjcampscv983.org/news.htm

I had contacted the First United Methodist Church of Decatur and had blogged on the issue also.

http://newtknight.blogspot.com/2014/01/first-united-methodist-church-of.html#.UxI4l_ldWSo

Evidently the response was to hide the enabling of the SCV. It might be asked whether the church did stop hosting the SCV. If they did, I think they would tell me and the local SCV camp would be listing a new meeting place.

The documentation of the campaign to get churches to not enable neo-Confederate groups is online at www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm.


Investment banker Warren Stephens, Wall Street, and the Confederacy

There is a recent article on investment banker Warren Stephens, Wall Street, and the Confederacy at the following link:

http://www.salon.com/2014/02/28/wall_streets_long_torrid_affair_with_the_south_partner/

This is an excerpt from the article.
Think of Dixie, and your mind probably conjures something like “Duck Dynasty” — bearded men bouncing along dirt roads in pickup trucks, raucously waving rebel flags.

You probably wouldn’t think of black-tied bankers cavorting in the plush ballroom of Manhattan’s St. Regis hotel. But were you to peek inside the recent gathering of a secret Wall Street society, you’d have witnessed investment banking tycoon Warren Stephens taking the stage in a Confederate flag hat, performing an ode to finance to the tune of “Dixie.” “In Wall Street land we’ll take our stand,” you would have heard him croon, as 200 of his well-heeled brethren nibbled foie gras.

This is the article from which Salon got their information about the recent gathering.

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2014/02/i-crashed-a-wall-street-secret-society.html


There has been for a long time sympathy for the Confederacy in New York City. I refer also to a blog posting I had on the New York Times newspaper. http://newtknight.blogspot.com/2013/11/when-new-york-times-was-pro-neo.html. By the title of the blog I don't want to suggest that the New York Times is no longer sympathetic.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Dallas Episcopal Bishop Stanton assures me that no congregation in his Diocese will host the Sons of Confederate Veterans

I got an email today from Dallas Episcopal Bishop Stanton assuring me that no congregation in his Diocese will host the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV).

Hopefully we can get a response from other Episcopalian bishops in Richmond and South Carolina.


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Andrew Napolitano attacks Lincoln on Fox News, Jon Stewart on Daily Show ridicules Napolitano

This is an article Salon had online about Andrew Napolitano attack on Abraham Lincoln on Fox News and the Jon Stewart's response on the Daily Show.

http://www.salon.com/2014/02/25/the_daily_show_destroys_fox_news_libertarian_andrew_napolitano_for_blaming_the_civil_war_on_abraham_lincoln/

This Daily Show segment is here.

http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/mon-february-24-2014/denunciation-proclamation

There are two interesting things about this.

1. Fox News is having Andrew Napolitano on their network as a credible expert. It is a sign of neo-Confederacy getting mainstreamed into the conservative movement in this country.

2. The public is beginning to find out about this craziness through major media outlets like the Daily Show.

By the way, if you haven't purchased your copy of "Loathing Lincoln" by John Barr you should.

http://lsupress.org/books/detail/loathing-lincoln/


Sunday, February 23, 2014

Secession as a means of segregation, California secession and elsewhere

Tim Draper talks about breaking up California into six states to make them more homogeneous. "Homogeneous" should be seen as a code word for segregated.

His proposal would contain most of California's minorities into a couple urban areas.


Saturday, February 22, 2014

What states secession movements are all about, and the impact they will have and one benefit of the movements.

Did someone's favorite candidate lose a recent election and they can't accept the result of the election? The trend now if you lose an election it seems is to propose secession. That seems to be the strategy of conservatives in parts of some states, usually if not entirely where Democrats are elected to state wide office.

The secession movement is really an attack on Democracy. Frequently a winning candidate in an election will carry some parts of the election district and not others. The solution isn't to divide up the election district, whether it is a nation, state, country or a municipality, on some pretext or another. The idea of secession is an attempt to nullify the results of an election whether in 1860 or today.

The California movement to divide the state into six states has no chance of actually resulting in six states since congress would have to admit them. However, California is foolish enough to have adopted the referendum method of enacting laws and a secession measure might be on the ballot if it gets enough signatures. It will need about 8% of the population. Instead of electing a representative and holding that person accountable for their actions if you live in California you have dozens of proposals for laws on the ballot and no one is really accountable for them.

This secession movement in California will have one result though. It will discredit individuals, political factions, movements, who are seen in support of breaking up California and who there after will be perceived as anti-Californian. If the secession measure gets on the ballot politicians, organizations, and opinion leaders will have to make public stands on this. There could be some severe internal conflicts in the conservative movement in California.

Most importantly if the ballot measure becomes even somewhat close in opinion polling or at the polls secession movements in the United States will suddenly go from being objects of amusement or curiosities to being threatening. Secessionism will be perceived with greater hostility. The Confederacy will be seen more negatively as well as organizations which celebrate it. Monuments to those who sought to break up the United States by violent means will seem less tolerable.

So I think that the progress of the secession proposal in California will be great in terms of defeating the neo-Confederate movement.

Also, it will afford an opportunity to raise issues about the celebration of the Confederacy in California. Perhaps the California state government shouldn't celebrate secession if it doesn't want secession.

What will likely happen is that the measure will fail to get anywhere near the 800,000 signatures required and even if it did get on the ballot do very poorly and secession will be again amusing as the pre-occupation of cranks.

Perhaps if Obama could denounce secession it might get enough signatures through the reflexive response (knee jerk reaction) of a certain fraction of conservatives to get on the ballot. The Democrats might make statements to get a reaction from some conservatives to sign the petition to get the measure on the ballot to cause trouble for the Republicans. Suddenly Republicans would be identified with secession.



Thursday, February 20, 2014

Into the vortex of madness, secession in New York

At the Daily Caller website there is an article advocating secession in New York state. The article is here:

http://dailycaller.com/2014/02/18/founders-to-new-york-you-dont-need-congresss-hall-pass-to-secede/

There has been some desire by some people in upstate New York to have their own state. Primary motivation is that they lost the election and can't get their own way.

The writer of the article at the Daily Caller, Mike Church, a professional ranter with his own show, claims that there is no impediment for secession, that Upstate New York if they want to have their own country and not have to worry about the U.S. Congress granting them admission as a state.

As for my "professional ranter" label, I think if you read Mr. Church's article you will see that it fits.

In the competition to see who can get the most attention, who can best stoke outrage, by talk show hosts the conservative movement is being led into the vortex of madness. Also, it doesn't occur to conservatives that in talking about secession they are losing their claim to be more patriotic-than-thou. I am sure Mr. Church could care less what the consequences are of proposing secession as long as he can improve or hold his ratings and take out a position among his fellow ranters.

The article doesn't review the flow of income in the state of New York. It would be interesting to see where the cash flows in New York. How many rural areas in New York are subsidized by the whole state. Whether Upstate New York largely benefits from revenue from the down state region of New York. I do know that the State of New York is spending billions for an advance semiconductor manufacturing facility in Upstate New York to make the region a focus of the semiconductor and advanced technology. Something only a big state with a big budget could do.

In the 1970s I reviewed the representation in the Senate of the population of the United States. I found that 40% of the American public had 10% of the representation in the U.S. Senate and 10% of the American public had 40% of the representation in the U.S. Senate. Representation in the U.S. Senate is fairly unequal already. I don't think that this representation needs to be made more unequal by the admission of states which have very small populations and whose desire for statehood is that they didn't get their way in the last election.

Also, there is no great principle that all political bodies have to be homogeneous in opinion. In fact is probably is a good thing when political bodies have dissenting voices.

It will be interesting how far this secessionist thinking will go into the conservative movement, whether secession thinking will consume it and discredit it.


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Confirmation. Boston Avenue United Methodist Church did host the United Daughters of the Confederacy national convention in 2013

I came across this newsletter for the Maryland Division of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) in which they mention that they had their service at the Boston Avenue United Methodist Church in Tulsa, OK.

This is the direct link to the newsletter.
http://www.mdudc.org/Newsletters/UDC_Division_Newsletter__-_Winter_2013.pdf

This is the Internet Archive link to the newsletter.
https://web.archive.org/web/20140219115149/http://www.mdudc.org/Newsletters/UDC_Division_Newsletter__-_Winter_2013.pdf

From the newsletter:

The Memorial Service on Sunday afternoon was held at the beautiful Boston Avenue United Methodist Church. The church is in downtown Tulsa, OK and has a congregation of over 8,500.
This shows how the architectural prominence off the building is used to enhance the prestige of the convention. Notice the reference to the location of the church and the size of the congregation to inform the reader that the church which allowed them this space is important.

The campaign is documented at www.templeofdemocracy.com/bostonavenue.htm.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Richardson, Texas and Richmond, Virginia pages online.

The web pages for Richardson, Texas 2016 and Richmond, Virginia 2014, 2015 are now online.

http://www.templeofdemocracy.com/Richmond20142015.htm

http://www.templeofdemocracy.com/RichardsonTexas2016.htm

Webpage on the Charleston 2014 campaign done

Busy adding more information online and re-organizing it. Each city will have the correspondence and information for that city and the neo-Confederate conventions involved on its own page.

The first new webpage is http://www.templeofdemocracy.com/charleston2014.htm.

From the main page of http://www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm you will be able to go to the pages of the individual cities.  Material concerning the individual city conventions is being transferred to the individual city convention web pages from the general web page.

More pages are coming.


Sunday, February 16, 2014

Writing, writing Roman Catholic bishops and Archbishops

I finished writing the Roman Catholic Bishop of Richmond, the Archbishop of Baltimore, the Bishop of Dallas, and the Archbishop of San Antonio about upcoming neo-Confederate events in their dioceses and archdioceses for Richmond, Virginia and Richardson, Texas, a suburb of Dallas, TX.

I am going to have to write the United Methodist Church and the Presbyterian Church USA for Richmond and Dallas also.

Writing, writing, Episcopal Bishops

I will be mailing certified letters to the bishops of the Episcopal Diocese of Richmond and the Episcopal Diocese of Dallas Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014. The Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) is planning on their national reunion in Richmond in 2015 and in Richmond, TX, a suburb of Dallas, in 2016.

The letters are fairly similar to the letter in this blog posting of the letters to St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Richmond, VA. The Dallas letters don't discuss the UDC.

http://newtknight.blogspot.com/2014/02/letter-to-rectors-vestry-and-ministers.html

The Dallas letters don't discuss the UDC.

With the series of letters I am writing the Episcopal Church, they are going to become aware that their workings with neo-Confederate groups are acquiring visibility. They may or may not say something about the issue, but I don't think the Episcopal Church wants to be publicly identified with the Confederacy or have any controversy regarding either the Confederacy itself or neo-Confederate groups. The SCV will just find that churches aren't available from the Episcopal Church though various reasons might be given.

As always if you go to www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm you can find the documentation on the campaign or links to other pages with documentation on the issue. Sometimes there will be a lag between a blog posting and updating the web page.

I will be writing the Roman Catholic bishops next. I am going to write the major denominations which host neo-Confederate groups first for all the upcoming national conventions for the UDC and SCV. First the Episcopal Church, then the Roman Catholic Church, then the United Methodist Church and finally the Presbyterian Church.

After writing the national leadership of the Episcopal Church and the conservative Anglican group, I will be writing the Archbishop of Canterbury. At some point I will be writing Pope Francis if action is not forthcoming from the Roman Catholic in America.

Again these churches might not have anything they want to say on the issue, but I don't think they want to be involved with controversy.

This is just the beginning. There are the interfaith groups in each city. There are social justice groups in these denominations. There are African American organizations within the denominations. There are social justice groups in these cities outside the denominations. Gradually awareness of the issue will get out there.

I will be writing national leaders of each denomination or the next level up.

At some point one denomination may take a stand. If any denomination takes a stand it will focus attention on the others.

Even then there are additional actions after this. I am curious what African Methodists will think of the United Methodist Church in America hosting neo-Confederates. What will the Episcopal Churches in Africa think about the fact that the Episcopal Church in America hosts almost half of the neo-Confederate national convention services. It very well might not be of great immediate or practical importance to them, but I can't but feel that it will mean something when they reflect on it in a quite moment between the day's busy affairs. Some African nations have historic sites about the slave trade. What would they think about American churches that host neo-Confederate churches?

I really can't and won't write Africa until I have exhausted writing letters to the leadership of the denominations in America and they do nothing.

Beyond this I will be writing scholars on the issue of race and religion both in the United States and elsewhere.

Basically as denominations realize that the letters will never stop and that through one way or another this issue will get before the public, they will have to consider what will their record on the issue will have been.




Independence is, well, independence.

The Scottish independence activists are proposing an independent Scotland but keeping the British pound. The British government has said that they don't not plan to have a shared currency with an independent Scotland.

Independence is just that, independence. You are on your own.

This has led to whining that an independent Scotland won't take on any of Britain's debt. Since Scotland gets about $100 billion pounds a year from Britain more than it puts in, an independent Scotland would actually do a lot for Britain to handle its own debt. Even a quit payment of 200 billion pounds to independent Scotland would work out well financially.

The neo-Confederate movement is of course supporting the Scottish secessionists. http://www.lsrebellion.blogspot.com/2014/02/london-threatens-scotland-on-secession.html  The League of the South is calling this a threat under some definition of "threat" not known to logic. If you want to move out of the house, is it a threat that the other residents of the house don't want to pay or help pay your rent at your new residence?

The thing about being your own country is that you are your own country. It is more than pretty stamps and flags and colorful national costumes worn by dancers and buildings and pronouncements. You are on your own.

You will need to maintain a currency, investor confidence, good trade relations, etc. As a small nation you will have to negotiate with larger nations which don't particularly need you unless you are lucky enough to have something special right there in your national territory. Maybe a mineral deposit or a strategic location for a base.

If the economy of your small nation collapses because in the world system of trade your major industry goes under or your agricultural product is unneeded you have to beg for foreign aid rather than claim support for the region on the basis of fellow nationals helping out their distressed fellow citizens. Of course with earthquakes and other natural disasters it is the same, get out the tin cup.

The whole point of the various groupings of European nations over the years is that being a small nation really doesn't work well for the economy or defense. Hence various economic programs for European integration since World War II. From Benelux to the European Union and other groups. Hence there has been NATO.

The Scottish secessionists expect to be let in the European Union. They should reflect, if they are capable of such an intellectual process, on how Scottish secession is fundamentally contradictory to the whole point of the European Union. Europe has spent 70 years trying to erase national divisions and borders and is not going to want to create more national borders. The European Union is an integrationist movement not a secessionist movement. Also, if one nation originating from secession from a member state is admitted, it encourages other secessionist movements.

Nations are fundamentally imagined. Lots of history in Europe and forgotten kingdoms and boundaries that can be the basis of a lot of revived nations by imaginative individuals. Does the European Union want to be a brawl of 500 nations? Do they want to be a power vacuum?

Finally the European Union will have to consider whether an independent Scotland which found the British intolerable will be able to get along with other nations and be a good member in the European Union.

If Scottish secessionists are not happy with the British parliament where they have representation they should think how negotiations with the giant European Union will go when they apply for membership even without the opposition of the British. Or how much leverage they will have in the European Union as a small nation.

Finally, a lot of people living in Scotland will not want to give up British citizenship. They will find it difficult to sell their houses or businesses for what they are worth if they try to leave. Yet they will find themselves discriminated against. A brief review of the end of the Ottoman Empire should give an idea what might be forthcoming.

The other side of this issue is the documentation of Scottish immigrants to Britain. They would have to have some type of permit to work and live or otherwise be on tourist visas.

Independence is Independence. It isn't a romantic Saturday matinee movie. You had better have a really good reason for it.


Sunday, February 09, 2014

Letter to the Rectors, Vestry, and Ministers of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Richmond, Virginia

The following is the letter which I am sending by certified mail to the rectors, vestry, and ministers of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Richmond, Virginia, tomorrow on Monday. The letter is address to Rev. Adams-Riley and copied to the others listed at the end. I wish the leadership to be entirely informed about this issue.

At this blog posting I have the email I sent last weekend.

http://newtknight.blogspot.com/2014/02/email-to-staff-of-st-pauls-episcopal.html#.UveWjfldWSo

I don't think they will want to be know as America's leading church for hosting neo-Confederate groups.

I will be sending a copy to the Episcopal bishops also, along with a letter addressed to them.

                                                                       February 10, 2014

                                                                       Edward H. Sebesta
                                                                       esebesta@tx.rr.com

Rev. D. Wallace Adams-Riley - Rector
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
815 E. Grace St.
Richmond, VA 23219

Dear Rev. Adams-Riley:

I am an investigative researcher of the neo-Confederate movement. I am published internationally in peer reviewed academic journals and by university presses as well as in Black Commentator. I enclose a copy of my online resume which is also available at www.templeofdemocracy.com/resume.htm.

I am writing you to request that your church stop hosting the neo-Confederate groups the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) and the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV).

The 2014 UDC national convention is scheduled to be in Richmond, Virginia. From the year 2000 St. Paul’s Episcopal Church has hosted the UDC national convention services every other year, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012. Please see the Excel table enclosed. From 1990 to 2013 St. Paul’s Episcopal Church hosted the UDC national convention services 9 times, out of the 12 times an Episcopal Church has hosted the UDC from 1990. If you look at the enclosed bar graph of denominations hosting the UDC from 1990 to 2013 you can see that St. Paul’s Episcopal Church has by itself made the Episcopal Church the most frequent UDC convention hosting denomination, more than all the other denominations combined.

The 2015 SCV national convention is scheduled to be in Richmond, Virginia. Though St. Paul’s Episcopal Church has only last hosted the SCV in 1996, Episcopal churches in general are tied with Roman Catholic churches for hosting SCV national conventions since 1990. I enclose an Excel table of the churches that hosted from 1990 to 2013 and a bar graph of hosting by denominations.

The bar graphs and Excel tables mentioned above are also online at www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm.

One concern I have developed in investigating neo-Confederate groups is how they are enabled by mainstream organizations such as corporations, churches, government bodies and others. So I have decided to ask these groups to reconsider their relations with specific neo-Confederate groups. It is all well and good that I have written on extremist Confederate Christian nationalist for the Canadian Review of American Studies (http://www.templeofdemocracy.com/ConfederateChristianNationalism.pdf), but I have realized that the enabling of a racist historical consciousness in the general public and racist neo-Confederate groups by mainstream churches is as detrimental to America as these fringe churches. The Christianity advocated by the SCV is largely similar, you can review their Chaplain’s Chronicle online at http://www.scv.org/about/chaplainsChronicle.php.

 The Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) is an extremist and racist group of which is extensively documented in a Black Commentator article which is available online at a free guest link at http://www.blackcommentator.com/526/526_confederacy_sebesta_guest_share.html.  (Link is also in my online resume.)

In the summer of 2013 I had a successful campaign getting corporations to stop supporting the SCV as reported in a Black Commentator article which is available online at a free guest link at http://www.blackcommentator2.com/527_cover_scv_donation_loss_sebesta_guest.html. (Link is also in my online resume.) It took eight days for this campaign to succeed. I regret to say that so far the temples of Mammon were much more willing to give up neo-Confederacy than the churches of Christ.

The SCV often selects a historic and architecturally impressive church to hold their national convention service. When a faith group allows the SCV to use their church there is an implied endorsement to the extent that the SCV is an acceptable group to be using their facilities which normalizes them despite their extremist and racist agenda. The use of a historic and architecturally impressive church lends the prestige of the church building to the SCV.

I ask that St. Paul’s Episcopal Church not enable the Sons of Confederate Veterans in 2014 or in any other year by allowing them the use of their facilities.

The United Daughters of the Confederacy has a lengthy history of supporting white supremacy going back to the early 20th century shortly after they had finished organizing. You can see many primary documents regarding their racism at www.confederatepastpresent.org and use the search term “daughters.”

However, their racism is not confined to the past. This is an organization that currently runs a Red Shirt Shrine to glorify a violent white supremacist group in 19th century South Carolina and of which they are proud of as documented in the June/July 2001 UDC Magazine article, pages 23, 24, and the cover of their magazine. In an article in the Dec. 2012 UDC Magazine, pages 11-14, is an appalling racist article in which the infamous post-Civil War Black Codes of the former Confederate states are defended, African American men are represented have been potential rapists, the 14th Amendment to the Constitution is argued to be misguided, freed African Americans are asserted to have been incompetent to be citizens. The article asserts, “Newly liberated Negroes were not prepared for their freedom…” These are but two contemporary examples of the UDC’s racism. Documentation enclosed.

Allowing the UDC the use of a prominent historical and architectural church such as St. Paul’s Episcopal Church enables the UDC by lending the UDC the use of the building the prestige of the building as well as the prestige of the Episcopal Church.

Finally the SCV and the UDC exist to glorify the Confederacy a government created to perpetuate slavery and white supremacy.

The British academic, Michael Billig in his landmark book, “Banal Nationalism,” discusses the fact that the discussion of nationalism usually revolves around extremists to the exclusion of seeing the banal nationalism in everyday life. Billig contrasts the focus of the usual analyst of nationalism to the analyst of banal nationalism as follows:


The analyst of banal nationalism does not have the theoretical luxury of exposing the nationalism of others. The analyst cannot place exotic nationalists under the microscope as specimens, in order to stain the tissues of repressed sexuality, or turn the magnifying lens on to the unreasonable stereotypes, which ooze from the mouth of the specimen. In presenting the psychology of a Le Pen or Zhirinovsky, ‘we’ might experience a shiver of fear as ‘we’ contemplate ‘them’, the nationalists, with their violent emotions and ‘their’ crude stereotyping of the Other. And ‘we’ will recognize ‘ourselves’ among the objects of this stereotyping. Alongside the ‘foreigners’ and the ‘racial inferiors’, there ‘we’ will be – the ‘liberal degenerates’, with ‘our’ international broadmindedness. ‘We’ will be reassured to have confirmed ‘ourselves’ as the Other of ‘our’ Other.

By extending the concept of nationalism, the analyst is not safely removed from the scope of investigation. We might imagine that we possess a cosmopolitan broadness of spirit. But, if nationalism is a wider ideology, whose familiar commonplaces catch us unawares, then this is too reassuring. We will not remain unaffected. If the thesis is correct, then nationalism has seeped into the corners of our consciousness; it is present in the very words which we might try to use for analysis. It is naïve to think that a text of exposure can escape from the times and place of its formulation. It can attempt, instead, to do something more modest: it can draw attention to the powers of an ideology which is so familiar that it hardly seems noticeable. [ Billig, Michael, Banal Nationalism, Sage Publications, London, 1995.]

I extend Billig’s concept to a concept of banal white nationalism. My paper on it is online at www.templeofdemocracy.com/breaking.htm. The presentation of racist groups in sensational media reports are of largely marginal individuals who we will socially never run into, who have belligerent attitudes and behaviors, use racial slurs, have poor middle class decorum, and who perhaps wear funny clothes. Like Billig’s extremists, they reassure us that we aren’t racist since we are not like them. However, if we realize that racist attitudes and practice need not be confined to belligerent individuals shouting racial slurs or confined to physical assaults, we should not be so self-assured ourselves and have to examine a much wider range of practices and consider if we are involved. Suddenly it can be people that we know and who socially circulate in the circles we circulate or it can be us circulating in those circles.

The UDC as a well mannered genteel group is largely not perceived as racist despite their ongoing practice as mentioned earlier in this letter.

There is a great opportunity for St. Paul’s Episcopal Church to take a leadership role among American churches and set an example by stopping the hosting of neo-Confederate groups.

Again, I ask you not to host either the SCV or UDC. Additionally, I am asking for your help in my campaign against mainstream enabling of neo-Confederate groups by setting an example by not hosting either the SCV or UDC.

Regards,


Edward H. Sebesta

CC: Senior Warden & Vestry member Mark Gordon, Junior Warden & Vestry member Steve Micas, Vestry Advocate Spiritual Formation Board Christie Montgomery, Vestry Advocate Faith In Action/Outreach Board Bruce Cruser, Vestry Advocate Worship Board Brian Levy, Vestry Advocate Faith In Action/Outreach Board Michaelle Justice, Vestry Advocate Parish Life Board Dick Carlton, other Vestry members: Kia J. Bentley, Tom Smith, Barbara Davis, Chip Jones, Missy Benson, Sid Jones, Jennine Sherrill, and Cindy Wofford, Associate Rector Rev. Kate Jenkins, Downtown Missioner Rev. Melanie Mullen, Minister of Christian Formation Rev. Claudia Merritt.

Email to staff of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Richmond, Virginia

I sent the following email to the staff of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Richmond, Virginia. I got two replies, but not a commitment to stop hosting neo-Confederate groups.

The United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) has had their conventions at the St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Richmond, Virginia every even year since the year 2000 and they have announced that the 2014 convention is going to be in Richmond. The Sons of Confederate Veteans (SCV) is scheduled to have a convention in Richmond, Virginia in 2015.

So when I am writing churches and faith groups I am mentioning both events. The following was the email I sent to all the staff which had emails on their webpage.

Emailed 2/1/2014

Dear St. Paul’s Episcopal Church:

If you go to www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm you will see that St. Paul’s church hosts neo-Confederate national conventions more than any other church in the United States. Look at the tables on the page for the United Daughters of the Confederacy.

Also looking at the bar graphs the Episcopal church hosts almost half of the national neo-Confederate convention services.

In 2014 the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) is scheduled to have their national convention in Richmond, Virginia and in 2015 the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) is scheduled to have their national convention in Richmond, VA.

I am an investigative researcher into the neo-Confederate movement. I have been published internationally in peer reviewed academic journals, by university presses, and in “Black Commentator.”  You can see my resume online at www.templeofdemocracy.com/resume.htm.

The racism and extremism of the SCV is well documented in this “Black Commentator” article. http://www.blackcommentator.com/526/526_confederacy_sebesta_guest_share.html. I am currently writing an article about the UDC, but I can send you documentation.  In 2013 they had an article in their magazine about Reconstruction which is startling in terms of its racism.

Neo-Confederate groups usually seek out a historical and architecturally impressive church. When a church allows a neo-Confederate group to use their church they lend the prestige of their denomination and the architectural prestige of their church building to the neo-Confederate group.

I ask you to not allow the UDC or the SCV to use your facilities or church building for their upcoming national conventions.  

Please share this email with Rev. Adams-Riley.

Regards,

Edward H. Sebesta
Co-editor of “Neo-Confederacy: A Critical Introduction,” Univ. of Texas Press, 2008 (http://www.utexas.edu/utpress/excerpts/exhagneo.html), and “The Confederate and Neo-Confederate Reader: The ‘Great Truth’ About the ‘Lost Cause’” Univ. Press of Mississippi 2010. (http://www.upress.state.ms.us/books/1338).  Author of chapter about the Civil War and Reconstruction in the notorious Texas teaching standards in Politics and the History Curriculum: The Struggle over Standards in Texas and the Nation, published by Palgrave Macmillan.  http://www.keitherekson.com/books/politics-and-the-history-curriculum/





Letters to South Carolina Christian Action Council and to the Interfaith Partners of South Carolina about the Sons of Confederate Veterans


The a very similar version of the following letter was sent to the Interfaith Partners of South Carolina also.

I don't know if either group will bring up the issue of churches hosting neo-Confederate groups before the public. However, I do know that each letter alerts a lot of churches that hosting the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) will put them in the spotlight and they will be put in a position of making a lot of excuses which no one will believe about why they hosted a neo-Confederate organization. Both letters were sent by certified mail.
                                                                      February 1, 2014

                                                                      Edward H. Sebesta

Rev. Brenda L. Kneece – Executive Minister
South Carolina Christian Action Council
P.O. Drawer 3248
Columbia, SC 29230

Dear Rev. Kneece:

I am an investigative researcher regarding the neo-Confederate movement who is published in peer reviewed academic journals, by university presses and in Black Commentator. My resume is online at www.templeofdemocracy.com/resume.htm. I am writing this letter per our discussion earlier by email. I emailed you this letter so you can easily use the links.

One concern I have developed in investigating neo-Confederate groups is how they are enabled by mainstream organizations such as corporations, churches, government bodies and others. So I have decided to ask these groups to reconsider their relations with specific neo-Confederate groups. I am documenting my campaign online at www.templeofdemocracy.com/churchesoftheconfederacy.htm.

The Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) is an extremist and racist group which is extensively documented in a Black Commentator article which is available online at a free guest link at http://www.blackcommentator.com/526/526_confederacy_sebesta_guest_share.html.  (Link is also in my online resume.)

In the summer of 2013 I had a successful campaign getting corporations to stop supporting the SCV as reported in a Black Commentator article which is available online at a free guest link at http://www.blackcommentator2.com/527_cover_scv_donation_loss_sebesta_guest.html. (Link is also in my online resume.)

The SCV often selects a historic and architecturally impressive church to hold their national convention service. When a faith group allows the SCV to use their church there is an implied endorsement to the extent that the SCV is an acceptable group to be using their facilities which normalizes them despite their extremist and racist agenda. The use of a historic and architecturally impressive church lends the prestige of the church building to the SCV.


The SCV is planning on holding their national convention in Charleston in July 2014. They are currently looking for a church. I am hoping that no mainstream church will let them use their church.

I fully understand that the South Carolina Christian Action Council can’t direct or order any member church or group to do anything and I am not asking that you attempt to do so.

What I am asking is that the South Carolina Christian Action Council raise the issue with their member’s churches and groups to consider whether they should lend their facilities to the SCV for the SCV’s national convention and let them know about the Black Commentator article on the SCV. If they have questions they can contact me through the Black Commentator article contact form or the above email. Given I research extremist groups I have to be cautious.

I am not even asking for the Christian Action Council to take a position against hosting the SCV. I am confident that I have both the research and reasons to convince any faith group that aiding the SCV is not a good idea. I merely ask that the issue be raised with your members.

I see that the South Carolina Christian Action Council is willing to bring up many issues before the public, and that you specifically have an agenda against racism. So I am hoping that you will assist me in my campaign against the neo-Confederate movement by raising this one issue.
                                                                                   
                                                                        Sincerely Yours,

                                                                        Edward H. Sebesta

P.S. Temple of democracy comes from a 19th century metaphor for the American Republic.

Co-editor of “Neo-Confederacy: A Critical Introduction,” Univ. of Texas Press, 2008 (http://www.utexas.edu/utpress/excerpts/exhagneo.html), and “The Confederate and Neo-Confederate Reader: The ‘Great Truth’ About the ‘Lost Cause’” Univ. Press of Mississippi 2010. (http://www.upress.state.ms.us/books/1338).  Author of chapter about the Civil War and Reconstruction in the notorious Texas teaching standards in Politics and the History Curriculum: The Struggle over Standards in Texas and the Nation, published by Palgrave Macmillan.  http://www.keitherekson.com/books/politics-and-the-history-curriculum/

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