HOW I SEE IT: Confederates are American vets too

By Chris Ezelle, Locust Grove
January 19, 2011

Virginia sets the standard in U.S. history, and its historical past should continually be corrected and shared to educate those who either don’t know about it or won’t take the time to research and understand it.

Let’s take the two-year debacle about the Confederate monument on Barton Street in Fredericksburg that was dedicated in April 2009 near the war memorial. Once the city instruments were acquired to dedicate a small parcel for the monument across the street where 51 Confederate soldiers are currently interred, the Sons of Confederate Veterans, Camp 1722 of the city, held a dedication ceremony and invited the City Council.

Only one member participated.

In the next couple of years, the Fredericksburg Area Veterans Council stated that the buried Confederates are not American veterans. The city teamed with them and now wants the monument removed. This should stir emotions of those families who have ancestors buried on-site as well as historians alike. In 1861, the city "gave" the property up for the burial of those soldiers. It’s ludicrous for them to now renege.

Culpeper is just as historical. I certainly hope its town leadership is not doing the same — ghosting Confederate history, letting it be forgotten.

In 1953, the U.S. government enacted Public Law 85-425, defining the term “veteran.” This public law stipulates that the term "veteran" includes a person who served in the military or naval forces of the Confederate States of America during the Civil War, and the term “active, military or naval service” includes active service in such forces.

So, as an educational conveyance, I would like for the readers to know that every Confederate soldier and sailor of that war is considered an American veteran. Let it not be forgotten. I challenge each and all to read the "real history."

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