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(From The Southern Legal Resource Center)

Warren “Mac” McFarlin
Events and Ceremonies Coordinator
Arlington National Cemetery

Dear Mr. McFarlin:

Thank you for your proposal, including terms and conditions for the memorial service of the Confederate Memorial Committee of the District of Columbia for June 4th, 2023, at Arlington National Cemetery.
During my tenure as a senior executive with the General Services Administration (GSA), I served for more than a decade as chairman of this annual event. The Superintendent and authorities at Arlington National Cemetery, at that time, were without fail, supportive, often going beyond the call of duty in providing color guards, seating, pa systems, and encouraging other features for the occasion, which contributed so much. These included not only security for the event, but accommodations for the firing of period cannons and muskets by Civil War reenactment units. On several occasions, the U.S. Military also provided service vans for the event. Until quite recently, every President of the United States honored the Southern dead by sending wreaths to Moses Ezekiel’s monument at Jackson Circle, beneath which, as you know, the famous sculptor is buried.
Our speakers included prominent historians, authors, and public officials. These included Ed Bearss, Chief Historian Emeritus for the U.S. Park Service, U.S. Senator James Webb (D-VA), future Secretary of the U.S. Veterans Administration Robert Wilkie, Dr. James “Bud” Robinson (biographer of Stonewall Jackson), and many others. Every year, dozens of U.S. Senators from the Southern states honored the occasion by sending floral wreaths. At no time, over a period of over a century (going back to 1914) was there any censorship surrounding the speakers, the content of their remarks, the flags decorating the veterans’ graves, or the wreaths honoring these noble dead.
With the recent threat of demolition of Arlington National Cemetery’s largest bronze monument last year, the Memorial Committee was reconstituted with members of the many heritage groups who helped erect and maintain the monument to the Southern War Dead, first dedicated by Woodrow Wilson in 1914. We regard the Arlington National Cemetery as sacred soil. Not only was it …