Former Congressman Ben "Cooter" Jones Defends Southern Heritage Against Political Correctness
WASHINGTON, Va., Sept. 4, 2014 -- AN OPEN LETTER TO HERO DOGS, INC. OF BROOKEVILLE, MARYLAND
Dear Desma J. Wade and Jennifer Lund,
Recently, members of our organization, Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV), made a contribution to your organization in the amount of $482.91, to assist in your work of finding companion and service dogs for American military veterans who need such assistance. A number of our members in Maryland helped to raise that modest contribution and gave of their time and money in doing so. Today that cashier's check was returned to us at our National Headquarters in Columbia, Tennessee with a brief note which says that your Board of Directors and members of your development committee had made a decision to "respectfully decline" being one of our "beneficiaries." Your signatures were beneath.
There was no reason given for turning down this heartfelt gift, We, who have so many military veterans in our organization, cannot understand why you have done this. Without even the courtesy of an explanation, we do not feel that you have "respectfully" declined our gift, but indeed you have "disrespectfully" declined it. To us, this is an unconscionable insult to our historic and honorable heritage organization, and an insult to those whom you represent yourselves as serving, our wounded veterans. Your "decision" was gratuitous and terribly uninformed.
Sons of Confederate Veterans is one of our nation's oldest and largest heritage and genealogical groups. We were founded in 1896 and represent male direct descendants of those who fought in the American War Between The States. Our sole purpose is to commemorate and honor our ancestors. Currently there are 30,000 members throughout the United States and abroad.
There are more than 65 million American descendants of the armed forces of the Confederacy. We have served our nation in many ways. In every conflict in our nation's history we have sacrificed all to protect and defend our great nation.
The Sons of Confederate Veterans deplores the use of our forefathers' symbols by racist and "hate groups." We find these actions to be a desecration. These bigoted displays dishonor our ancestors.
Your insulting refusal to accept our caring generosity also dishonors our ancestors. But perhaps worse, you have withheld badly needed assistance from American veterans because of someone's apparent fixation with "political correctness." This is sickeningly wrong-headed.
You will find no more patriotic Americans than the members of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. And we always stand willing to help America's veterans in every way. Given your decision, it remains to be seen if you share that same willingness.
Ben L. Jones
Chief of Heritage Operations
Sons of Confederate Veterans
Ben Jones' great grandfathers Isaac Lane and Harley Jenrette fought with the Army of Northern Virginia. Jones served two terms in the United States Congress, where he was a member of the Veteran's Committee. There he was instrumental in getting compensation for veterans who suffered from the effects of Agent Orange. A writer, businessman, and entertainer, Jones is well known for his portrayal of "Cooter" the mechanic on the ever-popular "Dukes of Hazzard."