Dead Confederates, A Civil War Era Blog

Confederate Heritage™ Defenders, Ignorant of Confederate Heritage

Posted in Memory by Andy Hall on September 5, 2012

Billy Bearden, Flagger extraordinaire, continues his unhinged rant against the United Daughters of the Confederacy, when they don’t live up his own personal standard of butternut patriotism:

MOVE OVER Gail Crosby, Aileen Ezell, Suzanne Townsend, Martha Van Schaick, Betty Giragosian! The Texas UDC is not about to be left out of the race to shed itself of the Anti BATTLEFLAG gang!

Leaving aside the fact that that last sentence seems to say the opposite of what’s actually meant, the offense here is that a Dallas chapter of the UDC bought a bunch of “First National” flags to use on graves at a local cemetery, instead of the Confederate Battle Flag. Billy seems unaware that the First National has been the official flag of the UDC for more than a century, a part of its logo (right) in the same way that the CBF is part of the SCV emblem. Then again, the Flaggers’ allies at SHPG seem to believe that the UDC is a “support group to the SCV,” when in fact they are parallel organizations, with the UDC having been founded first, and thus is actually the senior of the two.

It’s amazing how little the Confederate Heritage™ folks seem to know about actual Confederate heritage.

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35 Responses

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  1. Corey Meyer said, on September 5, 2012 at 6:27 pm

    Another wonderful example of Heritage, Not History!

    • Andy Hall said, on September 5, 2012 at 6:41 pm

      It’s not even that. They don’t know history, they don’t know heritage, all they know is what they want, right now, and they haven’t gotten immediate satisfaction. It’s a temper tantrum in slow motion. What do you think is going on at the VMFA? The SCV signed a legally-binding contract with the VMFA and now they’re having buyer’s remorse, so they’re going to stamp their feet and say, look at me! Look at me! and pick fights with everyone, including the UDC, except for the people who got them into this mess which is the local SCV camp.

      It’s a good thing the Flaggers recently announced they’re one year old this month, ’cause otherwise I would’ve sworn they were four.

      • dhpatrick said, on September 5, 2012 at 9:30 pm

        I’ve seen two posts from you that seem to be down on the SCV. I’m curious as to your reasons why? Myself, I would be very quick to defend SUVCW, SCV, and UDC. I’m I wrong? I think they each have a unique and special charter for heritage and history. I’ve tended to respect all three of these organizations.

        • Andy Hall said, on September 5, 2012 at 9:43 pm

          I’m not down on the SCV (or UDC or other groups), so much as very crtiical of some of the things they say and do that I consider to be very bad, even dishonest history. But that’s a fine distinction that I hope will become more clear over time, and you follow the blog — which I hope you will.

          I have friends in all three groups – the SCV, UDC and SUVCW — and they are uniformly good folks who I like very much. When I’m critical of those organizations, it’s usually because I see them as doing a disservice to the history they’re organized to celebrate.

      • Billy Bearden said, on September 7, 2012 at 2:15 pm

        The Battleflags on the Chapel went up in 1993, and remained until 2010.
        I bet you didnt even know the flags were only on the Chapel while it was open for tours – perhaps 3 hours a day for a few days a week was all…

        Regardless, the VMFA launched a new expansion program and that included the cutting down of numerous old historical oak trees next to the Chapel. After the trees were gone, the Chapel could be seen from the new sun deck of the 2nd floor of the VMFA, and VMFA Board of Trustees Chairman Thurston Moore was offended by the flags on the Chapel. (they had been there 17 years)

        In the next BoT meeting, he offered a resolution the flags not be allowed in the next lease. It passed, and the SCV camp was given the new lease and 24 hours to either sign it or loose the the lease.
        This was done obviously under duress, plus the camp wasnt able to call an emergency meeting for any discussions.

        Faced with 24 hours to sign or vacate what were they supposed to do?

        The VMFA claims all their wonderful virture for public consumption, but they have never cared about the Chapel. In the 50s they asked the state to allow them to tear it down to make a parking lot. They are continually encroaching on the park land. They are in violation of numerous laws. The poor souls that volunteer to provide Chapel tours freeze in the winter and cook in the summer due to lack of any enviromental controls, and only the doors open, not the windows.

        The SCV camp did file a case against the VMFA but it languished in limbo for years due to the VMFAs lobbyists and legal teams. Same when the SCV camp tried to submit a bill to alter the lease terms. Frmr Gov Doug Wilder was involved in making the situation what it is today.

        Yes, it will take lots of money and a favorable adminstration for positive changes, in the meantime, the Flaggers are doing what they do and compiling never before seen evidence to assist. I cannot talk about all the details, but it is fathoms deeper than what you see posted on Facebook.

        • Andy Hall said, on September 7, 2012 at 9:03 pm

          I bet you didnt even know the flags were only on the Chapel while it was open for tours – perhaps 3 hours a day for a few days a week was all…

          You’d have lost that bet; I did know that.

          But “restoring” the flags to the place they were put in 1993 is a little like “restoring” the flag to the dome of the State House in Columbia, where it didn’t fly until the early 1960s, after the last read Confederate soldier was long since gone. If the flags went up on the chapel in 1993, then I fail to see how their placement there has any concrete connection to the old veterans who once lived on the site. Y’all slogan is “restore the honor,” but it’s an “honor” — like at the State House in Columbia — that real Confederates never knew.

  2. dhpatrick said, on September 5, 2012 at 9:07 pm

    Interesting. The UDC has normally always favored the 1st National, rather than the Battle Flag. I do believe both flags are historical. Though true, one rather unknown, the other shamed by some for ‘politcally in-correct’ reasons. Myself, I’ve never been one to abide by political correctness. It tends to have a rather bad First Amendment effect for my taste. Much the same as those wanting to remove ‘God’ from their political platform statement. What a world we live in today.

    I’m a ‘stars and stripes’ kind of person, but do look to preserve the heritage and history of my ancestors – on both sides of the Mason-Dixon Line. I think all of them were true heroes. Even those that fought on both sides.

    • Andy Hall said, on September 5, 2012 at 9:26 pm

      Thanks for taking time to comment. The Virginia Flaggers (of which Bearden is a prominent member, although he’s from Georgia) have really gone out of their way to pick unnecessary fights, particularly with the national HQ of the UDC, lagrely (IMO) as a way to raise their own visibility and to establish themselves as more-unreconstructed-than-thou. It’s a shame, because any legitimate arguments they have are regularly eclipsed by foolishness such as this.

      The notion that putting a “First National” on a Confederate grave is somehow disrespectful or being “politically correct” is just asinine. On Memorial Day, we go out and put national flags on the graves of veterans — not that of their individual branch of service or unit.

      The Flaggers are, first and foremost, all about promoting the Flaggers, and establishing themselves as the sole arbiters of what constitutes “honoring” Confederate veterans. As a descendant of many, many Confederate veterans on both sides of my family, I’m not willing to let them presume to speak for me or my relatives.

      Earlier posts about the Flaggers here.

  3. dhpatrick said, on September 5, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    I’m told this is a very flat medium. Maybe I’ve misjudged you. Please accept my apologies. I stand corrected.

    • Andy Hall said, on September 5, 2012 at 9:37 pm

      No offense taken. Welcome to the blog, I hope you find it useful/aggravating/amusing/enlightening/appalling as circumstances warrant.

    • Andy Hall said, on September 5, 2012 at 9:49 pm

      One additional thing — there are several folks, like Billy and the Flaggers, as well as certain commenters on the blog, with whom I have a long, online history of being in conflict with. So sometimes if I seem a bit short or cross-tempered with folks, it may be because of that. I really am a nice guy, given the chance to be. 😉

  4. Betty Giragosian said, on September 6, 2012 at 11:49 pm

    Another appalling display of ignorance by old Billy Bob Bearden is displayed on these pages tonight. I cannot be bothered by what Billy Bob writes or says. He is an irritant, like a chigger.and of no more significance.
    He just won’t learn our protocol.

    • Andy Hall said, on September 7, 2012 at 9:41 am

      I meant it above, when I said that the Flaggers’ effort is really one long, slow-motion temper tantrum. Their two primary “causes,” the VMFA and Lexington, both came about through due process by the parties directly involved.

      The Flaggers (and anyone else) are certainly within their rights to protest these things, and make their voices heard, but they shown again and again that their main objective is to raise their own visibility, and make themselves the arbiters of what constitutes legitimate or sufficient fealty to the Confederate Battle Flag — and it’s the CBF, specifically, that seems to be the beginning and end of their interests. As a colleague of mine observed recently, it’s a very simple-minded obsession.

      I think it’s a damn stupid thing to publicly go after the UDC as they have (both the organization and individuals within it), given all that the UDC has done over decades. It’s legitimate to disagree, but to demagogue them the way the Flaggers have, to the cheers and back-slapping from their online fans, is simply beyond the pale. There are lots of places where the SCV, UDC and I part company, especially on historical interpretation. But if the Flaggers want to be taken seriously, they’re going to have to start acting like grown-ups and not like entitled children who are angry that they can’t have what they want, right now.

      The UDC has been around for almost 120 years. Does anyone seriously believe the Flaggers will be around in just twenty?

    • Billy Bearden said, on September 7, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      Protocol? Yes Ma’am Mrs Giragosian, I fully support the learning and application of the UDC protocol. Have you read it lately? Odd ain’t it that this protocol is being utilized by the Flaggers, and are catching all the hell from the elected elites…

      http://www.hqudc.org/

      Information for Members

      THE CODE FOR THE CORRECT USE OF THE CONFEDERATE FLAGS

      The First National flag is the official flag of the United Daughters of the Confederacy®.
      The Second National flag is the official flag of the Children of the Confederacy®.
      They are to be used in all ceremonies of the respective organizations. The four Confederate flags (First National or Stars and Bars, Second National or Stainless Banner, Third National, and Battle Flag) should be
      used whenever possible by the UDC and the CofC so the flags will become familiar to everyone
      and inspire devotion for their use on all days commemorating the heroes and events of the
      Confederacy.

      • Betty Giragosian said, on September 7, 2012 at 10:52 pm

        Mr. Bearden, Yes, I know UDC flag protocol. One of our members wrote the book. As far as I know, the UDC is not attacking you all.. I have heard no comments. We are trying our best to ignore all of you, I don’t know who are these ‘elites’ you speak of. Just stick to your flagging, which you do so well, and don’t concern yourself with what the UDC is doing. It is none of your business. Why you felt you had to stick your nose into a chapter’s business is rather interesting.. Could it be you saw another chance for some publicity?

        That the way it appears to me.

        So you are studying our manual, correct Use of the Confederate Flag? Pity it does not address sowing the seeds of discord and hate. I guess you don’t really need to study that. You all know it well..

  5. David Tatum Jr said, on September 7, 2012 at 11:16 am

    Andy, What if the grave with the First national flag on it belongs to a man who did not serve under the First National flag! Perhaps he servrd during the time frame the 2nd national was in use!
    Things that make me go HMMMMMMM ?

    • Andy Hall said, on September 7, 2012 at 11:39 am

      What if it’s the grave of a veteran who never served in the Confederate Army at all? Or a civilian, maybe a public offical? The CBF certainly isn’t appropriate for them, is it? Hmmmmmmm. . . .

      What if it’s a veteran who served in the Confederate Army, but not in a unit that ever used the CBF? There were lots of those, especially in the Western Theater. The CBF was widely used, but universally so. Hmmmmmmm. . . .

      Is it “wrong” to put a modern, 50-star U.S. flag on the grave of a veteran of World War II, who served when there were only 48 states? Hmmmmmmm. . . .

      These are petty and pointless arguments — as is Billy’s. What I object to is the notion that, by using the First National to decorate Confederate veterans’ graces, the Dallas UDC is somehow being disrespectful to those men or their memory, especially when the First National has been that organization’s emblem for over a century. This is a cooked-up, self-serving and wholly unnecessary “controversy” intended to stir the pot, and to keep the Flaggers and their supporters in a continual state of apoplectic rage against anyone and everyone who’s not out marching with them on the sidewalk. It’s silly, and I’m a little surprised that you’re buying into it. After all, it doesn’t appear that J. C. Tatum was too offended by the UDC or its use of the “First National,” in their emblem, right?

      That sure makes me go, Hmmmmmmm. . . .

  6. David Tatum Jr said, on September 7, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    JC Served under the 3rd National Flag ! Thanks for posting his hand written note ! That is the 3rd national that is pictured ! Isn’t it ?
    And If I’m alive in 20 years I’ll be flagging !

    • Andy Hall said, on September 7, 2012 at 12:51 pm

      It also includes the UDC logo with the First National. Did you miss that?

      But yeah, it would be highly inappropriate to honor J. C. Tatum with a First National. Oh, wait, never mind.

      My point remains — to suggest that putting (any) Confederate national flag on a Confederate veteran’s grave is somehow inappropriate or offensive, is just ridiculous, and flies in the face of common sense and reason.

  7. Billy Bearden said, on September 7, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    Andy, my friend! I am most appreciative of all the Dead Confederate love I am getting ❤ Thank you!

    I dont recall at this moment, but I just cannot seem to remember stating the 1st National should never be used.
    I do make my position very clear that the ANV/AoT CBF should not be shunned or discarded, and it is the main flag of my choice.

    The ANV/AoT CBF was not at issue in Lexington, it was the RELee HQ flag, the 2nd National and the 1861 Virginia State Flag. At the Hopkins Green Rally I was photographed by the AP using a AoT CBF, but I had spent the better part of 8 hours carrying a large 2nd National.

    At the Battle of Williamsburg Va 150th, BUT for the Flaggers there would not have been a single historically accurate flag on display. We brought the Magruder Army of the Peninsula Battleflag to show.

    I spent a few hours over in Heflin Alabama earlier this year waving a Hardee Pattern CBF on March 17th – Patrick Ronayne Cleburnes birthday in the county bearing his name. You do a disservice to your fans by not posting the whole truth. But I still love you 🙂

    Your friend Betty Giragosian has posted numerous places she as a UDC member would prefer the ANV/AoT CBF remain furled and out of sight. She represents a small group of women in leadership positions in the UDC for which the battleflag is persona non grata. We could just look at the picture of SCV CiC Michael Givens being stopped by a policeman from stepping on UDC property just because he was holding a 3rd National flag to better understand this issue.

    Yes, per the UDC, they adopted the 7 star 1st National Government flag as their logo. Of course the 1st National was born on March 4th, 1861. The UDC refers to the 7 star as 'the Daughter's Flag" and it represents them and their ideals.

    However, time moves on. Shortly after March 4th, new states were added to the CSA and more stars added to the 1st National up to an official number of 13. Shortly after that it fell out of favor by the soldiers (by adopting a unique battleflag) and by the politicians (voting for the 2nd and 3rd Nationals) and the Veterans themselves (voting to use the ANV CBF and the SCV followed suit by incorporating it into the SCV logo)

    The 7 star Daughters flag does not recognize Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Arkansas, Missouri, Kentucky, Arizona, New Mexico, or the 5 civilized tribes.but a 13 star version would, although it wasnt the choice of the CSA vets themselves. The 7 star recognizes March 4th – birth of the CSA and the creation of the UDC. They dont use a 13 star, becuase it is a logo for them and their org.

    By the end of the WFSI, the CSA Govt had narrowed the official use of all battleflags to the ANV, AoT and Hardee pattern. All this you know.

    The UDC of the past were fireeaters who were unafraid and unashamed of the Confederate Battleflag. Most all memorial statues that incorporate a CSA flag uses a Battleflag. I have read stories where the women of Virginia marched on the state capitol with battleflags to oppose a proposed issue. All old UDC magazines and pictures show the brave women of the UDC standing proudly with or in front of a CBF.

    The women mentioned in the subject line of my post have publically expressed anti Battleflag sentiments, some going as far as calling police on those who use them , attempting to intimidate others with loss of IRS 501c3 if they are used, or removing from office or blocking transfers of members who use them, or denying awards to those who use them.

    UDC regulations call for ALL flags to be used. It is a few who agree with the NAACP and forcing an anti CBF agenda on others. At least folks like Ben Jones (member of naacp) will call BS on the removal or attack on the CBF.

    • Andy Hall said, on September 7, 2012 at 1:03 pm

      I am most appreciative of all the Dead Confederate love I am getting ❤ Thank you!

      Not a problem. You give me good material to work with.

  8. Betty Giragosian said, on September 7, 2012 at 1:38 pm

    The offensive comment that the UDC is to serve the SCV is pathetic. Thank you, Andy, for addressing that. The UDC owes no explanation to the these people, these two groups who have been conducting a relentless campaign of hate towards my organization. However, our rules and protocol have been graciously explained, but they ignore the explanations. They prefer not to know.
    I have just read that Billy Bob has written about me. I quoted the poem by Father Ryan, to furl the banner, let it rest. But no, BB prefers that it be painted on the top of a car driven by a bunch of red necks.
    Half truths cannot be addressed.
    Well, Andy, I shall be reading your blogs closely from now on. You do have a wealth of stupidity to deal with. I will be interested to see if you can make heads or tails of it.
    At least, Billy Bob, I can thank you for putting me in the very best of company. I have the greatest respect for those fine women.

  9. David Tatum Jr said, on September 7, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    “After all, it doesn’t appear that J. C. Tatum was too offended by the UDC or its use of the “First National,” in their emblem, right? ” ( PSSSSST thats the 3rd national flag you posted Bubba did YOU miss that ? )

    You posted it ! Seems in your haste to bash Dixie, you forgot to look at the flag YOU refered to when you posted !

    But what the heck stick to your guns ! You have never let facts stand in your way before, so why start now ?

    • Andy Hall said, on September 7, 2012 at 3:07 pm

      No, Dave, I didn’t miss it. Just like I also didn’t miss the UDC emblem and First National right next to it.

      I don’t really care which CS flag is used; the whole point is that it doesn’t matter. In his original FB posting, Billy’s doing what Billy and the Flaggers perpetually do, which is to create conflict and dissension where there really needs to be none. Fish gotta swim, etc.

  10. David Tatum Jr said, on September 7, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    so I shot myself in the foot again ! It won’t be the last time !

  11. David Tatum Jr said, on September 7, 2012 at 3:10 pm

    Gee I really messed up at my blog the 3rd national was adopted 3 days before the letter was written.
    But seein as how WH Tatum wrote the bulk of the letter I guess I could have used any of the 3 !
    (Hows that for a song and dance ?)

    • Andy Hall said, on September 7, 2012 at 3:17 pm

      You know I’m yanking your chain on this, Dave.

      Again, it doesn’t matter which flag. The point for you is that it’s an act to commemorate your ancestor. But the same goes for the UDC in Dallas, too.

  12. David Tatum Jr said, on September 7, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    My whole problem with the UDC thing is, they claim by having the CBF displayed they could forfit their tax exempt status due to it being “political”

    Andy that’s Horse Hockey ! Unless Obama adopts the flag for his re-election effort, (or the other guy) I don’t see how the CBF can be political.

    It’s the soldier’s flag plain and simple. Sure there were a lot of variations but I feel that it is the proper flag to be placed on their graves.

    • Andy Hall said, on September 7, 2012 at 3:55 pm

      We’re going to disagree on this, because I see the UDC’s position on this being preferable to the SCV’s, even if the former is exercising over-caution. The SCV, and several high-profile members like Richard Hines, Frank Earnest and Brag Bowling, have gone out of their way to inject themselves into political races specifically over the issue of the CBF and Confederate History Month, citing their SCV credentials as their authority. That’s politicizing the CFB, and making it a campaign issue, whether one agrees with their positions or not.

      And that’s not even mentioning the stuff posted on Twitter by someone identifying himself as SCV_OFFICAL. It appears to be shuttered now, but it had gems like these:

      Read article on BARRY SOETORO aka Barak Obama. Occidental College transcripts.

      Are White people the target of the White House. When is going paint it Black.

      FOXNEWS: Yellow buses dropping off Illegals at INS Centers? SEIU ACORN? Do I hear FRAUD SCAM?

      ATTN: You 99% Please do me a favor and leave the United States!

      All things being equal — and speaking as a taxpayer — I prefer the UDC’s approach to staying far removed from such foolishness, to the way some in the SCV engages in it while continuing to enjoy what amounts to a federal subsidy at my expense. YMMV.

  13. David Tatum Jr said, on September 7, 2012 at 4:04 pm

    When I stand on the sidewalk holding a CBF, ain’t nothin political about it!

    • Andy Hall said, on September 7, 2012 at 5:28 pm

      Maybe you should apply for 501(c)(3) status.

  14. David Tatum Jr said, on September 7, 2012 at 11:23 pm

    Naw, I’m just gonna swim on up to the VMFA tomorrow and join my friends !
    Wouldn’t wanna waste that Federal Subsidy ! Heck I pay taxes also !
    Billy sent ya a message but it got lost in cyber space- allow me to help–

    Regardless, the VMFA launched a new expansion program and that included the cutting down of numerous old historical oak trees next to the Chapel. After the trees were gone, the Chapel could be seen from the new sun deck of the 2nd floor of the VMFA, and VMFA Board of Trustees Chairman Thurston Moore was offended by the flags on the Chapel. (they had been there 17 years)

    In the next BoT meeting, he offered a resolution the flags not be allowed in the next lease. It passed, and the SCV camp was given the new lease and 24 hours to either sign it or loose the the lease.
    This was done obviously under duress, plus the camp wasnt able to call an emergency meeting for any discussions.

    Faced with 24 hours to sign or vacate what were they supposed to do?

    The VMFA claims all their wonderful virture for public consumption, but they have never cared about the Chapel. In the 50s they asked the state to allow them to tear it down to make a parking lot. They are continually encroaching on the park land. They are in violation of numerous laws. The poor souls that volunteer to provide Chapel tours freeze in the winter and cook in the summer due to lack of any enviromental controls, and only the doors open, not the windows.

    The SCV camp did file a case against the VMFA but it languished in limbo for years due to the VMFAs lobbyists and legal teams. Same when the SCV camp tried to submit a bill to alter the lease terms. Frmr Gov Doug Wilder was involved in making the situation what it is today.

    Yes, it will take lots of money and a favorable adminstration for positive changes, in the meantime, the Flaggers are doing what they do and compiling never before seen evidence to assist. I cannot talk about all the details, but it is fathoms deeper than what you see posted on Facebook.

    • Andy Hall said, on September 7, 2012 at 11:43 pm

      Um, Dave — that comment from Billy was posted. It didn’t get “lost in cyberspace,” I just had other things going on and didn’t get around to putting it up immediately. Sheesh.

  15. Andy Hall said, on September 8, 2012 at 7:52 am

    Closing comments for a while.


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