Ken Burns
 
From: JimWDean@aol.com
 
Re: In 2003 some outburst of Ken Burns mania (like maybe an airing of the series in question) prompted me to litpak him. ‘Pak #305 (featuring the Nationalist Times newspaper, of course) went to his home in Walpole, NH. Everybody that Burns has ever offended, I want you to let him have it where he lives — the zip for Walpole is 03608. (Communist Wikipedia has its uses, such as telling us where to contact the cultural commissars.) If you’ve written him before via a TV network or whatever, please resend via snail mail, no matter how long ago it was.

Dear Folks, I understand the spirit here but would urge you not to waste typing time writing Burns. If you do you might as well waste some more writing Jesse, and Al Sharpton when you are done.
 
The pressure points are the funders (General Motors…’our money’) has funded Burns for years…and the PBS board…and the stations that are aired.
 
We can’t erase the Burns documentary. But we do need to work to get our side out. So we can hammer them morally on their continuing to re air this year after year without including our rebuttal, which should be done before, during and after the airing of this thing. By formally demanding that they give us the air time to do this plus a tiny fraction of the Burns budget, if they refuse, they start getting boxed in on refusing to air opposing views on this obviously two sided topic…and perpetrating an historical hoax on the educational system and our young people.
 
We will be able to do some of this via multi media website work…point by point rebuttals to the main historical manipulations. If nothing else PBS should fund debates and force Burns to participate (he has always refused because he has nothing to gain from it). If we can get our own website traffic up into seven figures we can run their continuing refusals out to the public, including the educational community.
 
It’s only when they start getting phone calls from those kinds of folks ‘why don’t you let them have their say on the important matter?’ that we will have some leverage with them. When they do their fundraisers we could protest them outside, video it, and put it up on the web asking people not to fund them until they stopped the censorship on the Southern viewpoint. This would be hugely bad PR for them as the other media would have to cover it. But it has to be done carefully.
 
As a back up, we will need to do our own ten to twelve hour series, even if it takes us five years to do it. Personally, I finally doing our own Burns response documentary is that most effective ‘monument’ that we can build to our ancestors, but I have to tell you that response to this idea has been poor. Shifting our large monument funding into something that would have far greater impact…folks just don’t’ seem to get it. We would get a 1000 times more bang for their buck.
 
We have the knowledge and the skilled people to do this, and we can do it for peanuts compared to the $3 million that Burns spent on the initial series.
 
And in closing, once we did this, we need to do a similar mega series on Reconstruction. There is nothing that would generate more sympathy for the South, black and white together, than the current generation learning what really happened during that time as it planted lots of bad seeds.  And once people know the story they will grasp instantly why the truth about it was censored out of our history. People hate to be lied to and never forgive the liars, so their credibility is ruined. That is the ultimate payback for them and the best gift we can leave our descendents…to not leave the professional liars with their reputation intact as ‘morally superior experts’.
 
I have been field testing some of the rebuttal material on Yankee officers in the Vet orgs who retire here…and it works. They are flabbergasted and shocked that they went their whole lives not knowing. That is partially our fault as we put a lot of our treasure into non communicating monuments.
 
In the old days we had leadership that only wanted to use the internet for top down communications. They were even antagonistic toward lateral communication as they saw that as a critique mechanism. As for using the Net to market our org, I don’t think that that even crossed their minds. It was a huge PR mistake.
 
I mention this solely as our multimedia efforts could also drag out, with much less impact, if we don’t do some soul searching as to priorities…what we need now that will give us the biggest return for our effort.
 
Jim Dean
Gordon Camp #46…Atlanta