By John Zakrzewski, Litchfield Camp 132, Conway, SC
Most will answer, to remember their Confederate ancestor and that is a reasonable reply. I submit there are a number of other equally good reasons, which are not normally considered, but are just as important. These include:
- Our Confederate ancestor gave us an indelible place on his family tree.
- Our Confederate ancestor gave us a rich heritage, which is steeped in honor and strong family values.
- Our Confederate ancestor gave us a noble birthright, that only his ancestors can possess.
- Our Confederate ancestor let us inherit his honor, perseverance and loyalty to the cause for Southern Independence, for which he so nobly fought.
- These traits cannot be bought like titles of nobility; they cannot be bestowed by any government and they cannot be sold. They are representative of his life and determination, so that you will remember his time on this earth.
- This legacy is yours to do with as you please. You can honor him and those brave men who fought for the Confederate states or “you can do nothing”.
If you DO NOT recognize his connection to you or know about his life and accomplishments, you cannot understand the family connection that helped to put you on this earth. If you choose not honor him and his family, then you have shut the door on history and we will all lose a valuable link to the past.
In this age of instant electronic communications and journalists who embrace political correctness rather than truth, the Sons of Confederate Veterans has plenty of foes with a basic dislike for all things Confederate. Always remember, there are people in this country who would gladly erase this chapter in our nation’s history, if they could and revert it to a museum display.
Preventing misinformation and attacks are the keys to future generations being able to understand exactly what Confederate heritage is. These negative efforts can be minimized by our knowledge of the facts and our determination to protect the honor of our veterans and by keeping vigilant, we can make the right decisions. Consider these basic requirements for our long term success:
KNOWLEDGE means that we will always come together to honor and protect these men who fought for the Confederate cause, because we understand why they made their initial decision to fight and that decision is not something that we question.
DETERMINATION means, that we will never let our Confederate ancestor and his heritage, become just another picture in a book or an artifact resting on some dusty shelf at a museum. We will embrace the education of every new generation, so that others can hear the facts that we call “The True History of the South”.
VIGILANCE means, that we will forever stand and protect his memory from those who mean to do it harm and we will always be ready to say NO to these efforts, effectively blocking their way, when those negative actions occur.
In closing, my challenge to you is a simple, yet monumental task and our call for your help has never been more important, than it is today.
Therefore, I ask you this question:
Will each of you continue to serve as a dedicated family member, working to set the stage for the next 150 years, to guard this important historic legacy and assure that the sacred memory of our Confederate ancestors, will never be forgotten?