Letter: Evan Parrott, Ashburn

Editor: I see the “cancel culture” movement is alive and well—if intellectually dishonest—in our Board of Supervisors (“Loudoun Launches Work to Rename Rt 7, Rt 50,” Loudoun Now, May 27). However, it is patently wrong to put Mosby in the same category as Harry Byrd. 

Renaming, according to the article, is “… part of a project to inventory segregationist and racist symbols across the county.” That universal criterion would justify the indictment of the entire Democratic Party. Remember, it was the Democratic Party that fought the Civil War to preserve slavery and, later, imposed 100 years of Jim Crow laws to suppress Blacks everywhere in the South.

As for Mosby, he was a soldier, a calvary officer attached to the Confederate Army, but he was also a rebel in more ways than one. Here’s what the late Sen. Eugene McCarthy said about Mosby in the foreword of a book by Kevin Siepel (Rebel, 1983): “… In the era of Reconstruction he [Mosby] supported Republicans for the presidency, most notably Grant and Hayes. Mosby was called a “turncoat” by some Southerners. … Had he fought on the winning side, he would undoubtedly be remembered as a national hero. … In another time and without the military service, Mosby might well be compared to Sen. Wayne Morse of Oregon. Morse was elected to the Senate as a Republican. Subsequently he [Morse] declared himself to be an Independent, and then ran and was elected as a Democrat.”

So, if five-time presidential candidate and famous liberal Democrat Eugene McCarthy can find great merit in Mosby’s post-war service to the United States, and could even compare Mosby to uber liberal Democrat Wayne Morse of Oregon, the Loudoun Board of Supervisors can at least leave the Rt. 50 signage alone. Besides, the board could then claim a (rare) “cost avoidance” victory on behalf of the tax-weary county taxpayers.

Evan Parrott, Ashburn

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