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An Open Letter on Opportunity Lost/ Leesburg, Va.

Approximately one year ago, I received an invitation to come an
appear with the Sons of Confederate Veterans in the President Parade
in Alexandria, Virginia. After the parade, I had the opportunity
to visit with many of the participants of the parade at the beautiful
home of the United Daughters of the Confederacy. While at the facility,
I personally signed copies of the now infamous letter that I had
written to President George W. Bush, and presented that letter to
one of his staff, even though at the time I had already put that
letter in the Presidents hands at a town hall meeting in Raleigh,
N. C. earlier. The irony for me was that the very table that I signed
the letter was the very same table that Marse Lee had signed the
treaty at Appomattox Courthouse which ended the War Between The
States. I pondered as I sat there what must have been on Marse Lee’s

Three days ago I would again receive a passionate plea from these
same men once again. This time I was being asked to come and testify
before a committee that would decide the fate of a Sons of Confederate
Logo sign that was to be displayed along side many other community
sign postings. While I had little time to prepare for the trip,
I readily agreed to come. I knew that my 1996 Ford Van that was
given to me by my God Father J.Pat Baughman which I now fondly refer
to as Traveler in honor of Marse Lee’s horse was a little sick,
her tires balding from the more than 100,000 miles I have put on
her from my many travels, headlights not working, sometimes running
hot ; I could not risk the chance of taking her the some 441 miles
deep into the North . With the March Across Dixie Funds nearly depleted
again after we had paid for our successful airing of the Historical
Documentary in Maryville, Tennessee, and needing to find a way to
do the same in Ashland, Kentucky for the upcoming Black History
Month celebrations,. I decided to use the company Hertz car rental
card that now gathered dust in my pocket since I had the van. To
my dismay it had been cancelled. As time was running out for my
departure to Leesburg, I frantically called the men in Leesburg
to tell them of my debacle. I knew they would help if they knew.,
for they had already agreed to compensate me for any expense I occurred
getting there. Tuesday morning on the day I was to arrive, I received
this message. HK, I just now got your email. I’m sorry I didn’t
get it sooner., but I suppose this means you won’t be coming. Sorry
it didn’t work out. Maybe the next time. I would write back: Dear
Bob, You have no idea just how broken hearted I am about not being
able to come. I had Terry Lee, my little brother to gather up some
of his very best pictures of Black folks standing very proudly with
our Southern Cross. Times like this is the very reason that I sent
out a plea to my Southern Family to send donations to the Southern
Legal Resource Center March Across Dixie Fund, so that I can come
places like Leesburg without having to grovel around for funds to
move about. We are now beginning to play the Historical March Across
Documentary in places like Leesburg. I believe it is a tremendous
awakening for the Nation to hear and see a Southland in the body
politic much different than the one written and recorded by those
who hate her. I want to come there more than ever before. You men
get together and make it so. Please don’t give up on me. Your Brother
HK. The irony is that I believe I know now how Marse Lee felt that
day at Appomattox; resources depleting, men tired, starving, innocent
civilians being murdered and burned out by an army that ignored
all written and unwritten rules of civilized warfare.