Regretfully based on the winter conditions with temperatures not rising tomorrow based on the forecast our meeting is canceled for tomorrow night. Our speaker Alex Cheek will visit with us in March for his program “Sherman in Fayetteville” but he has provided a special message in tribute to Robert E. Lee as the birthdays of Lee & Jackson are remembered in the month of January. We look forward to seeing everyone on February 13th for our 4th Annual Lee-Jackson Celebration and more details will be provided in the near future. The special message below:
Dear Members of the Lt. F.C. Frazier Camp 668 SCV & Laura Wesson Chapter 5 OCR,
I was looking forward to speaking with you, but that will have to wait until March 13th. Rest assured, it will be worth the wait, and I look forward to seeing all of you then. Please bring a friend or family member, as my topic, Sherman in Fayetteville, will not seem too obscure for anyone’s taste.
Your speaker next month will have much to say on General Robert E. Lee, but I’d like to remind you why it is so critical that we remember and promote Lee’s life and the example he set for all, still as relevant today as it ever was. No finer example of a Southern gentleman and leader exists whose positive impact was so great both during and after the War, and eventually on both sides. His superb character as a Christian gentleman stood out in his life as a man, husband, father, citizen, soldier, and educator. He’s not only a Southern hero, but a hero for the ages, under whom so many sons of North Carolina served in defense of their homes, their families and their liberties. This is not to slight the sterling character and remarkable heroism of General Thomas Jackson, I assure you, another Virginian from very different origins whose life is a model for all.
Richard Weaver, the North Carolinian who stands as one of the finest minds of the 20th century, wrote a brilliant essay in 1948 called “Lee as a Philosopher.” Permit me to quote from it: “I would not represent Lee as a prophet, but as a man who stood close enough to the eternal verities to utter prophecy sometimes when he spoke. He was brought up in the old school, which places responsibility upon the individual, and not upon some abstract social agency. Sentimental humanitarianism manifestly does not speak to language of duty, but of indulgence. The notion that obligations are tyrannies, and that wants, not deserts, should be the measure of what one gets has by now shown its destructive power. We have tended to ignore the inexorable truth that rights must be earned. Fully interpreted, Lee’s “duty” is the measure whereby freedom preserves itself by acknowledging responsibility. Man, then, perfects himself by discipline, and at the heart of discipline lies self-denial. When the young mother brought an infant for Lee to bless, and was told, “Teach him to deny himself,” she was receiving perhaps the deepest insight of his life.”
Richard Weaver wrote those words seventy years ago, in a time that to our shocked and battered sensibilities of today was a comparative paradise of an ordered and moral society, one that still revered God and tradition. Today, Lee’s simple yet profound admonition “Teach him to deny himself,” is even more unbelievably distant from what we experience in every aspect of life. Everywhere the counsel is the same. Indulgence, excess, self-absorption; escape cares, escape duty, escape obligations, escape family, escape traditions, escape morality. Why, you can even try to escape the very gender that almighty God gave you! In its degraded quest for immediate gratification the modern mind asks, “Where’s the easy way? Where are the easy lessons?” A century and a half ago Robert E. Lee could have told us: There are none, none of any lasting significance, none of any real value.
Throughout January, remember Lee, remember Jackson, and tell others about them.
To the Guardianship of their Memory, “Ne Obliviscaris…Lest We Forget…”
Ronald Lee Perdue, Commander
Lt. F.C. Frazier Camp 668
Sons of Confederate Veterans