Friday, February 17, 2012

Former 'Dukes' star blasts NASCAR

    Former Georgia congressman Ben Jones, who starred as ace mechanic "Cooter" Davenport on the hit television series "The Dukes of Hazzard", issued a statement on Friday criticizing NASCAR for its decision to prevent the use of the popular "General Lee" 1969 Dodge Charger at the Phoenix Sprint Cup race in March.  
   "At a time when tens of millions of Americans are honoring their Union and Confederate ancestors during this Sesquicentennial of the Civil War, NASCAR has chosen to dishonor those Southerners who fought and died in that terrible conflict by caving to 'political correctness' and the uninformed concerns of corporate sponsors," Jones said in a release.

   "This is also an extraordinary insult to rural Southerners, who are NASCAR's oldest and most fervent fan base, and it sends a message against inclusion and against the need for diversity.  Many of us who are descended from ancestors who fought for the South see this as a crude dishonoring of our kinfolks and our heritage. Our ancestors were proud Americans who had fought for our Nation before the Civil War and have served honorably in every conflict since then.

   "The Confederate Battle Flag is on display at many National Battlefields and is displayed by countless historical and heritage groups who are descendants of those who fought in that crucible of the American experience.  'The Dukes of Hazzard' remains a beloved classic television show which is watched by Americans of all races and regions and is watched internationally as an upbeat reflection of the American Spirit. It is also watched by our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and around the world.

   "While it is true that the Confederate Battle Flag has been used by extremist groups like the KKK, these groups also display the American Flag and the Christian cross in their rituals. However, the vast majority of the display of the St. Andrews Cross Flag is in a benign spirit of remembrance and reverence. I am a veteran of the Civil Rights Movement, a Life Member of the NAACP, and a proud member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. 

   "As a cast member of 'The Dukes of Hazzard' and the owner of several 'General Lees', I can attest that the car and our show reflect the very best of American values, and that Hazzard County was a place where racism was not tolerated. This action by NASCAR  is a provocative and unnecessary over-reaction to a problem that doesn't exist.  It is a disgraceful and gratuitous insult to a lot of very decent people. It is prejudicial toward those good-hearted folks who, like Uncle Jesse Duke, are in fact 'never meanin' no harm'."


  1. I couldn't agree with him more! That car is a icon & the reason some of us got into cars. To not allow it to be at a track is bull!!! Just because it has a flag of ANY kind on the roof is sad & dishearting. What's next not to allow the color white because the KKK wears a white sheet or to refuse those of us that have the confederate flag tattooed on us to not come to the track?? They gonna make all those fans at the Dega race pull them down too?? To those that wanna say it supports slavery & hate then you need to educate yourself & get over it!

  2. Nascar is losing what the elder Mr. France had---a big set of gon**ds.

    The young Mr. France wants to be "politically correct" and liked by the people that could care less about nascar.

    Nascar was built on the backs of hard working individuals who could care less about "correctness" and it is slowly fading on the backs of a bunch of geeky, pencil-pushers.

  3. It is a long-standing truism, that "He who seeks to offend none, usually offends all".

  4. I can think of a few million black "Americans" who might disagree. Your beef, Mr. Ace, is with the KKK. Sorry you "rural southerners" didn't quite fight hard enough (OR AT ALL?) back in the day in order to make SURE that your beloved flag wasn't being desecrated by KKK scum. Hindsight is 20/20. We see right through the "Jesse Helms" in y'all. Too late. Too bad. So sad. Your flag is the ULTIMATE symbol for HATE and PREJUDICE in this country. Your southern "history" taught in school always states the south fought for rights to sell cotton, and had nothing to do with slavery! Go read the history books that are taught IN THE REST OF THE FREE WORLD. I guess only then y'all will realize the truth about the south.

  5. Obviously, Not a NASCAR fan, so who cares what you think or say about this issue.

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