Saturday, February 28, 2015

Ancient Relics and Statues Destroyed in Mosul...Sound Familiar?

This is heartbreaking, and difficult to watch...

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2970270/Islamic-State-fighters-destroy-antiquities-Iraq-video.html
"Islamic State thugs have destroyed a collection of priceless statues and sculptures in Iraq dating back thousands of years.

Extremists used sledgehammers and power drills to smash ancient artwork as they rampaged through a museum in the northern city of Mosul.

Video footage shows a group of bearded men in the Nineveh Museum using tools to wreck 3,000-year-old statues after pushing them over."
How utterly disgraceful and disrespectful to destroy the culture, heritage, and history of a people because of hate and ignorance.

Sound familiar? How frightening is it that there are people in the United States who would like to see the same thing happen to our Confederate memorials, monuments, and artifacts? It's already happening here, and will continue, if we don't start standing up and defending our heritage!


"The men of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and now something greater than Jonah is here."  Matthew 12:41
  Susan Hathaway Va Flaggers


P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150
info@vaflaggers.com

Monday, February 23, 2015

Rescuing General Stuart

General James Ewell Brown Stuart is once again in danger! Though he is no longer prey to the mortality of the flesh, his monument in Richmond is in serious danger of being rendered hors d'combat due to the passage of time and frailty of every man-made monument in Richmond is in serious danger of being rendered hors d'combat due to the passage of time and frailty of every man-made substance no matter how "permanent".

THE STUART-MOSBY HISTORICAL SOCIETY is sponsoring a fund-raising effort to keep General JEB in the saddle for many years to come. For a cost of $35,000, craftsmen will return the General to full health and continued existence. It is hoped to have the funds raised by June so that the work can be done during the summer. All monies collected above and beyond the cost of restoration will be placed in a trust fund for future maintenance.

To help in this most worthy cause, please make out your check to: The Stuart Mosby Historical Society and mark for the "Monument Restoration Fund." Please send your tax-deductible donation to:

The Stuart-Mosby Historical Society
5405 Midship Court
Burke, VA 22015

Photo: JEB Stuart Monument, Monument Ave, Virginia, February 8, 2015, Virginia Flaggers

Susan Hathaway
Va Flaggers


Virginia Flaggers
P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150
info@vaflaggers.com

Monday, February 16, 2015

VMFA Update...Thank you Alex Nyerges!

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) in Richmond controls the historic Confederate Memorial Chapel on the grounds of the Old Soldiers Home.

The property dates from the 1883 sale of a house and 36 acres to R.E. Lee Camp No. 1, Confederate Veterans, for a Confederate soldiers' camp, or home.

Donors to the home included Union veterans from Lynn, Mass., who gave the chapel organ. The chapel, which features stained-glass windows and hand-hewn pews, was dedicated to Confederate war dead in 1887.

The "Robinson House" and the chapel are all that remain of the camp, which operated from 1885 to 1941. After the last veterans died the property was deeded to the commonwealth.

By Executive Order 35 in 1991, the VMFA acts as the governor's agent in leasing the chapel to the SCV.

At its March 31, 2010, meeting the VMFA Board of Trustees' Executive Committee unanimously passed two motions concerning the Confederate Memorial Chapel on the grounds of the Old Soldiers' Home in Richmond: First, the museum would not renew the existing lease as written. Second, the museum "is opposed to flying the Confederate Battle Flag or any of its derivatives on the Museum property."

The new lease called for the removal of Confederate Battle Flags from the portico of the Chapel. The flags were removed in June 1, 2010. In the fall of 2011, concerned citizens began protesting the desecration of the Chapel and the dishonoring of Confederate Veterans, by gathering on the sidewalk in front of the VMFA, carrying Confederate flags.

Coming together to stand against the VMFA, the Virginia Flaggers were born...

As we rang in 2015, the Virginia Flaggers began our 168th week of flagging the VMFA.

Although frigid temperatures arrived in the Capital of the Confederacy, we maintained our vigil, with over 2 dozen Flaggers who joined us over the month, logging over 190 hours on the sidewalk in front of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts...

1-1-15 New Year's Day Flagging! Beautiful day and great conversations on the Boulevard. Lots of residents and tourists out and about and a fabulous day for Flagging the VMFA!
1/3/2015- Chilly temps, light traffic. Flaggers standing tall!
1-8-2015 FRIGID temps, 29 degrees. Foot traffic very light, but Confederate flags present and visible for auto traffic and museum officials and visitors. GOD BLESS THE FLAGGERS!
1-10-2015 The cavalry arrived (Army of Northern Va, Mechanized, that is)!  Chilly but sunny on the Boulevard in Richmond and the flags of our ancestors flew proudly. 1/2 dozen Flaggers are forwarded the colors to protest the forced removal of Confederate Battle Flags from the portico of the Confederate Memorial Chapel and changing hearts and minds in the Capital of the Confederacy.
1-13-2015 Overcast and 38 degrees in the Capital of the Confederacy. A half dozen Flaggers made their way to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) to protest the forced removal of Confederate Flags from the portico of the Confederate Memorial Chapel, including a guest Flagger all the way from ALABAMA! Mid-South Flagger Shannon F flew in for a FLAGcation, spent a few days visiting Confederate sites around Richmond, and spent the afternoon standing with us, for his Confederate ancestors, and against museum officials who have dishonored their memory and desecrated the Confederate Memorial Chapel.  God bless the boys from Alabama! "Audemus jura nostra defendere!"
1-17-2015 While many of us were in Lexington for the Lee-Jackson weekend, these devoted Flaggers MADE SURE there was a presence at the VMFA Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and forwarded the colors on a sunny, but chilly afternoon... Standing for Confederate Veterans, and changing hearts and minds!
1-21-2015 Cold, cloudy, and mixed precipitation in the Capital of the Confederacy, yet Flaggers gathered on the Boulevard and forwarded the colors to protest the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA).
1-24-2015 Light rain and 41 chilly degrees meant little foot traffic, but steadfast Flaggers made their stand at the VMFA Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.
01-29-2015 Thursday evening flagging. 44 degrees and overcast. Almost a DOZEN Flaggers and clear weather meant plenty of Flaggers to cover the line AND an opportunity to change hearts and minds in the Capital of the Confederacy. — at VMFA Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.
1-31-2015 Sunny, but chilly day on the Boulevard. Convos were few, but flags were plentiful. Thank you, Flaggers!
Ready to stand with us? Join us... we will be Flagging WEDNESDAY 2-6, and SATURDAY 1-5 THIS WEEK.

RETURN the flags!
RESTORE the honor!
Grayson Jennings
Va Flaggers

P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150
info@vaflaggers.com

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Complaint About SCV Sign in NC Leads To Battle Flag Installation

Some of you may recall the news story a few weeks ago, about the SCV Roadside sign that was removed in North Carolina once it was found to be in the DOT Right of Way...

http://beforeitsnews.com/alternative/2015/01/nc-scv-group-agrees-to-remove-sign-3097884.html

All I have to say is, to whoever raised a stink about it... THANK YOU...not only has the sign been re-installed...there is now a Battle Flag flying, too!


From Billy Starnes, Major Charles Q. Petty Camp #872:  "The sign is now out of the DOT right of way. Although a little farther off the road, we decided to add a 52' x 52" Battle Flag so it is now more eye catching than ever."

HUZZAH!  God bless the men of the Old North State!


Susan Hathaway
Va Flaggers

Friday, February 6, 2015

Saluting General James Ewell Brown (JEB) Stuart, CSA, On the Anniversary of His Birth

On this day in 1833, James Ewell Brown Stuart was born in Patrick County, Virginia.

"Among the gallant soldiers who have fallen in this war, General Stuart was second to none in valor, in zeal, and in unflinching devotion to his country. His achievements form a conspicuous part of the history of this army, with wich his name and services will forever be associated. To military capacity of a high order and to the noble virtues of the soldier he added the brighter graces of a pure life, guided and sustained by the Christian's faith and hope. The mysterious hand of an all-wise God has removed him from the scene of his usefulness and fame. His grateful countrymen will mourn his loss and cherish his memory. To his comrades in arms he has left the proud recollections of his deeds and the inspiring influence of his example."

- Robert E Lee
 
God bless General Stuart, and all the brave men who wore the gray!



 
 

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Va Flaggers: Charlottesville Lee-Jackson Public Hearing Report

Before attending last night's City Council meeting in Charlottesville, Virginia, where a public hearing was to be held regarding Council Member Kristen Szakos' proposal to remove the Lee-Jackson City holiday from the city calendar, we called to make sure that public comments were welcome, and to ascertain what the requirements were to speak.  We were told that all citizens of the Commonwealth were welcome, given the guidelines and told to arrive at 6:30 to sign up to speak.

Just over a dozen of us, from several different parts of the state, arrived early, signed up to speak and took our seats.  What we witnessed in council chambers, almost as soon as the meeting opened was, in all honesty, shocking, and if I had not been there, would have had a hard time believing took place. Mayor Huja opened by asking for attendees to respect all speakers and not interrupt them. He may as well have been talking to the brick walls. The first 12 speakers were allowed to speak on any topic  The majority who spoke were Charlottesville residents, and a circus like atmosphere quickly ensued, with members of the audience constantly shouting and talking over speakers, council members, and the Mayor, who occasionally attempted to restore order, to no avail.  The speakers themselves accused council members and the city of everything from criminal activity to overt racism and oppression at every level of government and public service.  To give you an idea of the speakers' subject matter, we offer, word for word, a resolution that was presented for consideration by a city resident during his remarks:
"WHEREAS the City of Charlottesville was founded by Thomas Jefferson, a scoundrel of the most unsavory variety, indeed, a slave rapist, and INSOMUCH AS the evils of racism, began during his time, continue unabated to afflict the City of Charlottesville to this day,  BE IT SO RESOLVED that from this day henceforth, no longer shall the City of Charlottesville celebrate racist Confederate war criminals, but shall instead honor the memories of Nat Turner and John Brown, in hopes that one day, we shall be rid of the foul legacy of Thomas Jefferson."
Watch his remarks here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RpvM8HKsL3w

As one can imagine, when it came time for the public hearing on the Lee-Jackson question, the crowd was already worked into a frenzy, and it intensified when the first speaker, an elderly Charlottesville resident, rose to speak against removing the holiday.  He was heckled and interrupted over and over.  Although many who watched the proceedings on live video stream told us afterward that they could hear commotion but not make out exactly what was going on, each speaker who spoke in favor of the Lee-Jackson holiday was subject to this ill-mannered and rude behavior, in varying degrees.

By the time I was called to speak, I will admit that my nerves were on edge.  I had never witnessed such a spectacle in a public meeting and honestly many of us began to fear for our safety.  I'm glad I had my remarks prepared and with as steady of a voice and every bit of composure I could muster, I read them as loudly as I could, hoping to drown out and determined to completely ignore the shouting and commotion in the chamber.  My talking points consisted of pointing out the honor and character of Lee & Jackson, the precedent set by a proclamation signed by the Governor, the fact that this proposal was causing division and strife that would not exist otherwise, and making the point that both men were American Veterans who sacrificed all for God and Country and should not be dishonored.  This apparently was enough to make a woman in the row in front of me, who had been one of the more vocal throughout the meeting, determine that she had enough evidence to label me a "racist" and hurl an insult my way as I took my seat. 

More shocking to me than the behavior of the citizens was the lack of any kind of control by the Mayor or council members.  One young woman was removed from the chamber, after she repeatedly hurled insults at Ms. Karen when she was speaking.  Other than that, and a few requests for quiet that were ignored, the behavior, even profanity from speakers, was permitted and therefore sanctioned, as far as we were concerned.  Most of us were incredulously waiting for someone on City Council to have the guts to speak up and speak out against the behavior, and publicly apologize to the others in attendance. It never happened.

Those in attendance to oppose the measure included members of the Va Flaggers, Edmund Ruffin FireEaters Camp #3000 SCV, Robert E. Lee Camp #1589 SCV, Stafford Light Artillery SCV, 19th Va Infantry Camp #1493 SCV, Army of Northern VA/ Mechanized Cavalry, and the Sally Tompkins Chapter #2 Order of the Confederate Rose.  I am more proud than I can express of the way our folks conducted themselves, refusing to join in the disruptive behavior, despite the chaotic and abusive atmosphere.

Photo:  RYAN M. KELLY/THE DAILY PROGRESS
After the public remarks section of the hearing closed, we thought it best to leave, after the blatant bigotry, animosity, and disrespect we experienced in the meeting.  In the hall, we were greeted by ONE council member who made it a point to seek us out, shake our hand, thank us for coming, and apologize for what we had been subject to. I replied that I sincerely appreciated him doing so, as he was the FIRST person in the entire chamber to offer us any kind of welcome or civility.  At that point, a (black) security guard standing beside me reached out his hand, shook mine, smiled, and said, "Well, let me be the second." 

There were a few times during the meeting, when it became painfully obvious that council members had already decided this matter before we stepped inside the chamber, and I questioned if we had done the right thing by attending.  Those thoughts were quickly dispelled when I considered that by being there and standing for Lee & Jackson, at the very least our opposition and the truths we submitted, were made part of the public record and we, by our conduct and deportment, showed the stark and very clear contrast that exists between those of us who wish to honor our Confederate ancestors, and those who look for every opportunity to attack those with whom they disagree, taking great pleasure in causing division and strife where none exists.

What we witnessed last night was a good exhibit of the danger of democracy devolving into mob rule.  John Randolph of Roanoke said "anarchy is the chrysalis-state of despotism."  I see no greater example than the striking of a holiday to honor two men who faithfully and honorably served God and Country, in a futile attempt to appease and propitiate a handful of vocal agitators.

Respectfully,
Susan Hathaway
Va Flaggers


Thursday, January 29, 2015

Va Flaggers Lee-Jackson Weekend Report Part III - VMI

After making our way to VMI, we assembled on the parade grounds, at Jackson's statue.  Almost immediately, Cadets came out to speak with us, and to pose for photos with Generals Jackson and Lee.  As three young men were standing with us, a man came out of the archway, very agitated and screaming the Cadets' names.  He approached and demanded they get away from "those people" and "that thing".  We can only assume that by "those people" he meant the re-enactors portraying Lee and Jackson, and the men and women gathered to honor them on the holiday, and by "that thing" he meant the Confederate Battle Flag.





For the remainder of the half hour or so we visited the grounds, a Cadet was posted at the arch to prevent any cadets from communicating with us.

One of our Flaggers placed two battle flags at Little Sorrell's marker.  A VMI employee came out and told him that he would need to remove them when he left.



After paying our respects and singing a rousing version of Dixie for the Cadets who had gathered at open windows, we began to make our way back to downtown Lexington, to continue flagging.  At this point, I noticed that one of our young Flaggers was still at Jackson's statue.  I was informed that he had told others that he was very angry about the treatment of the cadets earlier and the fact that he could not leave the stick flags at Little Sorrell's marker, so he had decided to post the colors at that spot for the rest of the day.  I walked over to speak with him, and knew by the set of his jaw as I approached that he was determined to make his stand.

It just so happens that this young man is the GGG nephew of VMI Cadet/Confederate Veteran Moses Ezekiel.  My only concern at this point was to try and make sure he got a bite to eat, so when Va Flagger Bo Traywick (VMI Class of '69) volunteered to stand in his place while he went to get some lunch, he agreed to leave his post long enough to do so. 


When he returned, he brought his 6x9 battle flag and remained at his post, in front of Jackson's stature for the remainder of the day.  He reported to us that by this time the Cadet guard was relieved of his post, and that once again, Cadets began to approach him, ask why he was there, and show their support, and pose for photos.  This continued throughout the afternoon. 



Near dusk, an older man who said he was a VMI employee came out and told him that he would have to leave, since formation was scheduled to occur soon and that he would "offend" black cadets.  After a brief, somewhat heated discussion, where the young man explained to the man who he was, why he was there, and described the numerous black Cadets that had just spoken with him and posed for photos, the young man removed the stick flags and left the campus.

As he left, he was stopped by a black man visiting campus, who made it a point to shake his hand and let him know that he understood completely about the flag he was carrying and the honor due Lee and Jackson and was sick and tired of people speaking "for him" in that regard.  After that encounter, and as he was leaving campus, he was approached by a gentleman who said he had overheard the "discussion" with the VMI employee before he left the grounds and had gone to the Stonewall Jackson House and purchased a gift for him, presented him with the gift, and let him know how much he appreciated the stand he had taken that day. 


I have heard that our detractors commented on the "graying" of our ranks, when photos of the huge crowds gathered in Lexington began to surface.  That observation may be a fair one, but when I consider the stand that one 15 year old boy took, acting without prompting and with a pure heart, it occurred to me that once again, it was the youngest among us who led the way, and set the example for us all.

For those back in town, Flaggers reported another successful afternoon of Flagging, with overwhelmingly positive responses and MANY instances of folks stopping to shake our hands and thank us for being there.



In the afternoon, these young men joined us at the corner of Nelson and Main Street. At first, we thought they were part of a pledge for a college fraternity, but after talking with them, they told us they were high school kids just looking to join in the fun we were having. They said they had no opinion one way or the other regarding the Confederate flag and were just out there for satire. The signs were GREAT! We gave them some tips on improving sign visibility and proper flagging techniques. We even tried to teach them "God Save the Queen". They said they looked it up online before they came, but couldn't quite get the tune. I guess they don't teach "My Country Tis of Thee" in school any more. ;)


They were great kids -- polite, respectful, and clever -- and we enjoyed having them there.

As the sun set in Lexington, the last Flaggers standing were exhausted, but left with hearts filled with emotion from the two days spent honoring Lee & Jackson, protesting those who refuse to do so, and changing hearts and minds in Lexington.



Please take a moment to watch this truly breathtaking video, courtesy of our friends at Tredegar DroneWorks, with some incredibly moving photos and video taken in Lexington, including a glimpse of the new Jackson Farm Memorial Battle Flag on Highway 60 in Lexington:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ImbcdzcsA78&feature=youtu.be

Great coverage in the local media here: 

http://www.wdbj7.com/news/local/Lexington-celebrates-Lee-Jackson-Day/30781512

and here:
http://www.wset.com/story/27877835/hundreds-celebrate-lee-jackson-day-in-lexington

and finally, a message received from a VMI Cadet, sent Saturday afternoon:
"Great showing by the Flaggers at the Institute today! It does my heart good, lookin' out of barracks and hearing Dixie. Keep up the good fight!"
As always, thank you all for your continued prayers and support!

Susan Hathaway
Va Flaggers

Follow our blog:  http://vaflaggers.blogspot.com/
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Virginia Flaggers
P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150
info@vaflaggers.com