Dancing around an issue
 
From: wildbill4dixie@yahoo.com
 
Dancing around an issue – the Mississippi state flag 
 
I could not help but notice how Mr. Cooper of the Natchez Mississippi Democrat, an apparent reconstructed Southerner or “new souther” if you prefer, danced around the main issue of the Mississippi flag referendum. The issue was that in a state with a large black population, the flag with the Confederate symbol in it trounced its opposition by a 2-1 margin. One would think that the people had spoken. Yet, Mr. Cooper finds ways to duck and weave his way around the issue. So I wrote him. And he wrote me back, essentially telling me that (are y’all ready for this?) I should MIND MY OWN BUSINESS! I almost fell on the floor laughing. Of course, I couldn’t resist trying to pull open his glued-shut eyelids once again. 
 
To: kevin.cooper@natchezdemocrat.com
 
Re: http://www.natchezdemocrat.com/2011/05/22/state-flag-issue-needs-more-attention/ 
 
I just love how you dance around the real issues here. 
 
The old state flag triumphed by a 2-1 margin. The people spoke, and 10 years later you still won’t accept it? So “some people” are still offended by it? So 52% of Adams County (hardly and overwhelming majority, by the way) voted against it? So some people in other parts of the country might think ill of you? Believe me – people in New York don’t give a rat’s patoot about what people in Mississippi think of them. I wonder then, why you feel you have to care about what people in New York think? And you’ll never know how much business you lost because of the referendum results? Is there any record anywhere of some company saying that it won’t relocate to Mississippi because of your flag? Not that I’m aware of. Yet, you still think that people should consider changing the flag. 
 
Here’s a thought that you might want to reflect upon. As I recall, the NAACP and similar groups, along with some Hollywood heavyweights, threw all they had into getting out the vote to replace the 1894 flag. And this was in a state whose black population numbers, what…. 40% or more? Yet, the old flag triumphed by a 2-1 margin. It should have left the NAACP with egg on its face. After all, they and others like them have been screaming that the Confederate emblem is a “painful reminder.” Did someone forget to “remind” black Mississippians about the “painful reminder?” No, as I said, the NAACP threw all it had into the contest. So what happened then? Why didn’t legions of black Mississippians turn out at the polls that day?  And what about that other slogan we always hear? “To many” the flag is offensive. No one ever says how “many” is “to many,” because in your flag referendum 10 years ago, “to many” wasn’t “many” at all! So, how about a story about this Mr. Editor? 
 
I don’t live in your state but I remember the flag referendum very well. And I don’t remember one newspaper even coming close to touching upon what I just touched upon. Why is that Mr. Editor? Did it never occur to you? Or were you perhaps afraid of incurring the wrath of those whose mission in this life appears to be stirring up discontent among their fellow men? How about a story on those who sow the seeds of discord among their fellow men and who do it for the oldest reasons in the book – money and power? It’s not too late to do such a story. Do you have the cajones to tackle it? Didn’t think so. 
 
Bill Vallante
Commack NY
Sons of Confederate Veterans (Associate Member) Camps 3000, 1506, 1961, 2086
 
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AND HIS RESPONSE: 
 
From: Kevin Cooper <kevin.cooper@natchezdemocrat.com>
To: "Bill Vallante" <wildbill4dixie@yahoo.com>
 
Thank you for sharing your opinion. 
 
This debate, however, is one for Mississippians. Outside opinions only stand to muck up the waters on both sides of the matter. 
 
Thanks.
 
Kevin.
 
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AND MY RESPONSE BACK: 
 
Mr. Cooper, 
 
Yes, it is a matter for Mississippians. However, it appears to me that the old tried and true admonition, "mind your own business," applies only to people like me and not to folks in the NAACP or like-minded NATIONAL organizations and certainly not to the Hollyweird heavyweights. How convenient for you and those "new southers" like you. 
 
So, are you going to do the story I suggested or not? 
 
That’s ok. I already know the answer – "NOT"! 
 
Bill Vallante
Commack NY 
 
Ps – “no guts no glory”