Friday, April 17, 2009
Message From Lt. CIC Givens
I hope you are all well. I write you today to report that we have been officially blocked from displaying our logo on a race car in the Arca race at Rockingham this weekend.
When this journey began back in January, we were assured that our logo had been approved. We originally approached Nascar about the possibility and were turned down, but Arca had approved our design for the race at Daytona. Nascar got involved with the issue at Daytona as they own the track that Arca was racing on and we switched our sponsorship to the Rockingham race. This was done because Nascar had no connection to the Rockingham race, it was fully Arca.
I personally spoke with the owner of the Rockingham racetrack to make sure he would not have any problems. He welcomed our participation and made offers to attract as many SCV members to the race as possible.
We had our green flag and were finishing up the final design when I received a call from our driver, James Hylton. He had just spoken with the president of Arca and he informed him that we could not run a car with the Confederate Flag on it. I then called the president and had a lengthy conversation with him about this matter. He would not agree that we had been given approval although he admitted that a man from his organization had spoken with the man responsible for our contract. We only accepted the contract after we had been given approval by Arca. I explained this but the president was firm. He allowed that we could run our car with our name, website and phone number but not our federally registered logo that is issued on many state license plates. I explained that this is unacceptable and not what our contract allowed.
Therefore, our money is being returned. This points out just how much work we still need to do to vindicate the cause of our ancestors and educate the public on the truth of their symbols. I do not know what good will come from this project but I have hopes. To quote Jack Marlar, "A stable with no horses is always clean." He is right about that and that is why we continue trying to push the envelop and win as many battles as possible.
I had my final meeting with our driver, James Hylton today and presented him with his SCV membership certificate. He was visibly moved to be a part of this great organization even though he had just lost a much needed sponsor. After shaking my hand he covered his head with an SCV cap and told me that from now on, he intends to climb out of his race car, take off his helmet and don that cap. He then said, "Just let them say something about that!"
Thank you for your support. Onward to the next hill.