“Our Focus is Educating People Today”

Bonus: Seems to me the Virginia Flaggers should be protesting the Virginia Military Institute over this decision. Let’s see if they do anything.

Everett-B-D-Julio_XX_The-Last-Meeting-Of-Lee-And-Jackson-1864_XX_Museum-Of-The-Confederacy-Richmond-VirginiaTomorrow is the annual gathering in Lexington, Virginia to mark Lee-Jackson Day, but you don’t get the sense that the diehards are very excited. Yes, the Virginia Flaggers will be there protesting a ban on their beloved flag on city light posts by marching in the streets with their Confederate flags. This remains one of the most ludicrous heritage protests of recent years as you are still permitted to wave as many flags in Lexington’s public places as your heart desires. You just can’t do so on public light poles.

You don’t get the sense from Brandon Dorsey, who organized the event, that he expects a large crowd. The parade, which traditionally makes its way through VMI’s parade grounds had to be re-routed since the school “no longer allows weapons to be brought onto our post except in very limited circumstances.” Dorsey laments the fact that both VMI and W&L University no longer participate in Lee-Jackson Day ceremonies.

“The first year I was involved, a professor from Washington and Lee’s history department was a speaker. We haven’t had one since,” Dorsey said. “We have had musicians from VMI play. The last time we arranged for that, the rug was pulled out from under us.”

They must not embrace their Southern/Confederate heritage. It’s the only explanation. A spokesman for VMI said simply, “our focus is educating people today.” OUCH. In addition, Dorsey is looking for a last-minute replacement for one of their scheduled speakers.

Finally, you may remember that following Lexington’s 2011 flag ordinance, Brandon Dorsey and the local Sons of Confederate Veterans urged their community to boycott the city until the ordinance was revoked. They even went to court over it and, not surprisingly, failed. Well, what price have the good people of Lexington paid for their city’s actions? According to Andy Hall none at all.

Hopefully, some people will show up tomorrow and I will have something fun to write about over the weekend.

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4 comments… add one
  • James Harrigan Jan 17, 2014 @ 9:42

    Jackson-Lee Day is the worst sort of racist, white supremacist event and an ugly stain on our state. No academic institution with any self-respect would have anything to do with it.

    • Michael Lynch Jan 17, 2014 @ 13:56

      I think that’s a bit of an overreaction. I’ll be the first to criticize anybody who tries to minimize the role of slavery and race when it comes to understanding secession and the Confederacy, but people can admire and commemorate Lee and Jackson for reasons that have nothing to do with racism. And I don’t see anything wrong with VMI participating in some capacity, although I think their decision not be involved is fine, too.

  • Jefferson Moon Jan 17, 2014 @ 9:24

    My gggrandfather who was a native Virginian was with black Dave Hunter when he burned VMI.

    • Kevin Levin Jan 17, 2014 @ 9:26

      Thanks for the comment and congratulations.

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