As Fla leaders debate Civil War again, meet the black guy who wishes Confederates had won

Adam C. Smith
Times Political Editor
Sunday, February 8, 2015

Josh Solomon reports: The Florida Legislature could become the newest battleground in a war that officially ended 150 years ago.

Lawmakers might have to decide if the men who fought for the Confederacy during the Civil War are eligible for entry into the state’s Veterans’ Hall of Fame.

The hall honors "those military veterans who, through their works and lives during or after military service, have made a significant contribution to the State of Florida," according to its website. The question the Legislature could have to answer is who exactly counts as a veteran.

That’s because the governor and Cabinet members on Thursday tabled inducting the 2014 class into the hall to wait for "legislative clarification" on three nominees who fought for the Confederacy against the Union.

The Florida Veterans’ Hall of Fame, established in 2013, is a wall in the state Capitol building in Tallahassee with plaques commemorating inductees. Six plaques, all from the inaugural class, currently hang on the wall.

Eight nominees for the 2014 class were selected by the Hall of Fame Council and sent to the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs for review. But the department forwarded just five for approval, leaving the three Confederate veterans off the list.

David Lang, Samuel Pasco and Edward A. Perry all became distinguished Floridians after their service to the Confederacy. Perry served as Florida’s governor from 1885 to 1889; Pasco was a U.S. senator from Florida and is Pasco County’s namesake; and Lang helped found what is now the Florida National Guard. More here.

I caught up with Sons of the Confederacy members David McCallister of Tampa Bay and H.K. Edgerton on North Carolina on video.

Video URL:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=mCX5SQ5jv6g

On The Web:  http://www.tampabay.com/blogs/the-buzz-florida-politics/as-fla-leaders-debate-civil-war-again-meet-the-black-guy-who-wishes/2216896