Sponsor’s response to Augusta heritage violation

From: XtianConfdrt@aol.com

SCV called a "controversial group"

Below is a response from one of the sponsors of the Thunder over Augusta replying to our Georgia Division Chaplain’s letter

From: Michael Zibman

I very much appreciate your contacting me before judging the actions that were taken regarding your organization and Thunder Over Augusta. First I would like to tell you that on a personal level I have supported your organization through donations and purchases and feel a connection due to my heritage. I consider myself a “confederate”, had three family members die at Gettysburg and many fight in the Revolutionary War. My personal connection goes as far as being a pallbearer for Tony L. Carr, which was a confederate funeral.

That having been said, the circumstance here is that this event was one that was supported and paid for by five major sponsors and all of the sponsors agreed that the event was to celebrate our military. There was to be nothing political nor controversial, we accomplished this with no sides being taken regarding the politics of the current war but rather thanking those who serve our country. As a matter of fact, we avoided these issues by having no politicians speak at the event even though several requested to be a part of the opening ceremonies.

The Sons of Confederate Veterans, as you know, is a controversial group in that there are many who do not want to forget our past but they do not want to celebrate it either. So having you at Thunder Over Augusta was not the appropriate venue due to the nature of the event and with the unanimous agreement of the sponsors, it was decided to not have you participate.

I hope that you and your group understand the choice we made and that we apologize for the delay in coming to the decision.

Donnie Thompson