Louisiana Division Color GuardBy Mike Jones
HAMMOND, La. -- Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal was officially "rebuked" by the Louisiana Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans, at it annual reunion Saturday, May 1, at the Quality Inn.
The resolution noted the governor had refused for two years in a row to proclaim April as Confederate History Month, in spite of it being a tradition that was followed by both of his predecessors, Gov. Kathleen Blanco, a Democrat, and Gov. Mike Foster, a Republican. Jindal is also a Republican.
The SCV is a nonpartisan, nonpolitical organization that endorses neither political parties nor political candidates. A number of other Southern governors have made proclamations similar to the one Jindal refused, including those of Virginia, Georgia, Tennessee and Georgia.
David Hill, La. Div. Commander-elect
(Photo by Mike Jones)
The convention also voted to select a design for a silver commemorative coin for the Sesquicentennial of the War for Southern Independence. Selected for the front was an image of Judah Benjamin, secretary of state, secetary of war and attorney general of the Confederacy. Benjamin was also U.S. senator from Louisiana before the war. In addition, an image of a Louisiana pelican selected for the back of the coin.
Other actions by the convention included recommending Michael Givens of South Carolina for the position of commander-in-chief of the SCV, at its upcoming national reunion in Anderson, South Carolina. The Louisiana Division also voted to endorse Paul Gramling of Shreveport as lieutenant commander of the SCV at the national reunion. It was noted that Charles Kelly Barrow of Georgia is also a candidate for the position of lieutenant commander.
In addition, Todd Owens, former Louisiana Division commander and the current Army of Trans-Mississippi commander, is running for the office of Army of Trans-Mississippi councilman.
Wayne Cosby, luncheon speaker.
(Photo by Mike Jones)
The only amendment to the Louisiana Division constitution was to abolish the central brigade and consolidate it into the four other brigades. The action was reportedly taken because of a reduction in the number of camps and members in the central brigade.
The division donated $500 to the annual "Run for the Wall" event. Additionally, attendees at the convention donated over $300 to the effort. The event is a cross-country motorcycle trip to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. One of the stops is Monroe, La. where the cyclists are treated to a fried fish dinner, gumbo and Southern Confederate hospitality.
Various attacks on Confederate heritage were discussed. Former Louisiana Division Commander Chuck Morris said the University of Mississippi "Ole Miss," has now banned all Confederate symbolism. He said when he attended that school, Confederate flags were prominently displayed everywhere and the song "Dixie" was played so often by the school band, he became tired of it. He said license plates with the Confederate flag and an image of "Colonel Rebel" are still available at the Beauvoir gift shop in Biloxi. Scott Summers, a former member of Kappa Alpha Order, formerly proud of its "Old South" heritage and connection with Robert E. Lee, has now banned Confederate uniforms and Old South celebrations nationwide.
Compatriot Kerry Cooley encouraged members to request legislative proclamations from their state representative or state senator honoring a former Confederate who was prominent in their area. These official proclamations could become part of a Sesquicentennial book.