Sunday, November 5, 2017 … 8:36 A.M.

In Caddo Parish, the nearer one gets to dealing with a body of local government, the nearer she or he is to corruption and the multi-faceted self-service and other awfulness which imbues it.

Thus, the small army of local civic activists who so impressively worked to preserve our Caddo Courthouse Confederate monument necessarily resided in that particular local squalor for many, many months.

For all anti-monument, pro-Caddo Commission race-baiters who are rushing to respond even before I finish this thank you note, proceed. As so many of us here have learned, we cannot magically obliterate this disease in your heart.

I, on the other hand, promised myself I would carefully wait a bit to respond.

Now it is time.

I have been in touch with many of you these many months, and have thus known an eventual federal court determination was more or less assured given the legal position of the United Daughters of the Confederacy.

There are too many to thank individually, but some who are reading this know it is their work I have been busily following.

Simply said, all of you who thus worked did so with admirable diligence and certitude, against significant local political and media odds.

In fact, none of this was ever necessary or appropriate.

The monument, as we Caddo Parish natives know, has been a fact of life here for 111 years … not the stuff of rank political gamesmanship and race-baiting.

In my lifetime here, not one person ever mentioned the monument to me. Neither did I mention it to another.

The monument simply reminded us of a thing we had more or less always known: Louisiana was one of the states of the Civil War Confederacy.

Since we lived our lives with hearts, minds and souls opposed to racism – as God is our witness – that was that.

Until today’s Caddo Parish Commission came along.

Black or white, every Caddo resident must remember: a majority of Caddo Parish Commissioners have long been hate-mongers and self-servers.

If no one else has, I am very comfortable in saying I have done the work to prove that.

After all, what could possibly, really motivate ex-Commissioner Ken Epperson, or current Commissioners Steven Jackson, Lyndon Johnson and Matthew Linn, to forcibly and destructively drive such a wedge into our already suffering parish?

Has there, after all, not been enough evidence already, and recently, of the ways the Commission has turned itself into what fairly may be called a corrupt enterprise?

Yes, we know these things, but perhaps do not know how many “good “ people here aid and abet – and profit by – the sickness which owns our body of parish government.

Yes, I have been sickened by what I have learned since 2010. In doing so, I know – beyond reasonable doubt – that the Commission should not exist … that we honest and decent people in Caddo Parish cannot afford it, by any definition.

What this cabal of Commissioners and others have done is dishonor themselves … again, in the case of several of them.

What the cabal of those working against them has done is remind us all that opposition for the right reasons is our only possible response to corrupt and hate-filled public officials.

Our local and state courts will not stop them.

Other responsible authorities will not stop them.

Many local attorneys empower them from hiding, while cloaking themselves as civic activists.

Battles for our Caddo Parish public soul are thus required.

I thank those who fought this one for us.

© 2017 Elliott Stonecipher … ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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