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Forrest Marion

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The Naming Commission Comes for West Point

Created by the fiscal 2021 national defense authorization act, the Naming Commission’s duties included recommending procedures for renaming Department of Defense assets “to prevent commemoration of the Confederate States of America or any person who served voluntarily” with them. While nine U.S. Army posts named for Confederates have received the most attention, the commission’s “remit” extends much further. In fact,…
Forrest L. Marion
January 31, 2023
Blog

Stonewall Jackson and Institutional Antisemitism?

Recently, David Bernstein, the author of Woke Antisemitism: How a Progressive Ideology Harms Jews, remarked: “When you have an ideology that pretends to know exactly who the oppressors are and who are the oppressed, and you have an ideology that conflates success with oppression . . . then Jews who do, on average, better than the mean, are going to…
Forrest L. Marion
January 11, 2023
Blog

So VMI Isn’t Structurally Racist After All

The Washington Post’s Ian Shapira and his social justice allies in Richmond and Lexington, Virginia, must be worried, big-time. For nearly two years running, their Axis-Against-VMI has enjoyed remarkable success: forcing an honorable VMI superintendent to resign; removing Lt. Gen. “Stonewall” Jackson’s statue, and his name from Jackson Arch; renaming buildings and recontextualizing the past; inserting divisive ideology into courses;…
Forrest L. Marion
April 26, 2022
Blog

Has CRT Entered VMI?

The writer remembers with respect and admiration Mr. Anthony E. “Tony” Hamilton (1957-2022), President of the VMI Class of 1979, joining many in the VMI community who are mourning his recent loss. On January 18, 2022, three days after the inauguration of Gov. Glenn Youngkin in Richmond, Virginia – and for which the VMI Corps of Cadets passed-in-review, as is…
Forrest L. Marion
February 18, 2022
Blog

Was There a Real Lynching Threat at VMI?

The subject of lynching, or “lynch law” as it was also called, is a decidedly unpleasant and, often, a morally repugnant, topic. The term lynching has been used more broadly than as a synonym for death at the end of a rope at the hands of a violent mob to include other forms of vigilante activity such as shootings or…
Forrest L. Marion
January 3, 2022
Review Posts

Our Comfort in Dying

A review of Our Comfort in Dying (Sola Fide Publications, 2021), R. L. Dabney and Jonathan W. Peters, ed. Dabney “was fearless and faithful in the discharge of every duty. . . . was a Chaplain worth having.”  --Col. Robert E. Withers, Commander, 18th Virginia Infantry Regiment, 1861 In the current American dystopia, the life and ministry of an Old…
Forrest L. Marion
August 24, 2021
Blog

The Real VMI: A Little Meritocracy, 1839-2021?

On June 1, 2021, the Virginia Military Institute (VMI) – historic, meritocratic, renowned for rigor and its graduates’ service, and, for decades as color-blind as any institution may reasonably expect to be in a fallen world – may well have ceased to exist in a sense when the results of a Richmond-mandated investigation of so-called “structural racism” were released; and…
Forrest L. Marion
June 16, 2021
Blog

Yankees 38, VMI 3

The Virginia Military Institute, ever the underdog. . . . For longtime VMI football fans, the above score may be all-too-painfully reminiscent. I recall the first time I heard of VMI. It was a University of Maryland vs. VMI football game in 1971. I was captivated by VMI from then on and began there as a “Rat” five years later.…
Forrest L. Marion
March 11, 2021
Blog

An Independent Investigation of Racism at VMI?

As one pastor in his sixties mentioned recently, “I would have thought VMI to be one of the last bastions,” meaning, of course, among those institutions most committed to preserving the best of Western civilization, including the rule of law, freedom of expression and religion, and the traditional values that every generation of Americans took for granted until the 1960s.…
Forrest L. Marion
February 10, 2021
Blog

VMI Test Case for the Country

In May of this year, George Floyd died; seven months later, the Virginia Military Institute (VMI) removed its statue of Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson from its prominent position at the nation’s oldest state-supported four-year military college. The two events – one in Minnesota’s largest city, the other in Virginia’s picturesque Shenandoah Valley – had nothing to do with one another.…
Forrest L. Marion
January 7, 2021
Blog

Plodding Through the “ills of life”

Especially in unsettling times, it is helpful for Christians to examine the lives of faithful saints of old, who finished their race well. One brother and father in the faith, today perhaps remembered in Baptist circles and in North Carolina, was Elder Martin Ross. As a young man, Ross served as a soldier in the Continental Army in the war…
Forrest L. Marion
April 29, 2020
Blog

The “Desert Blooming Like The Rose.”

In 21st–century America, it’s difficult to imagine life without the ability to access information at an electronic click or command. But it was not always so. Two centuries ago, outside of New England, many small towns and rural communities lacked the institutions and the formally educated individuals (especially higher-learning institutions and pastors) that might have been expected to provide the…
Forrest L. Marion
October 26, 2018
Blog

The Ministry of ‘Ordinary Means’ and the Kentucky Revivals of 1828

In his important 1994 work, Revival and Revivalism: The Making and Marring of American Evangelicalism, 1750-1858, the Rev. Iain H. Murray examined the periods in American church history known as the first and second awakenings. Focusing mainly on the spiritual movements in the North, Murray argued persuasively that in general the First Awakening period of the mid-18th century was characterized…
Forrest L. Marion
July 6, 2018
Review Posts

Promoting Christian Sabbath or Lord’s Day Observance in South Carolina, 1827-1837

In the eighteenth century, each of the British North American colonies that later formed the United States of America had statutes that regulated the observance of the Christian Sabbath, or the Lord’s day. The two motivating concerns were, first, religious worship; and, second, commercial or business activity on the weekly rest day. While the high regard of New Englanders for…
Forrest L. Marion
September 8, 2015
Review Posts

An Upper South Perspective on the Christian Sabbath and Civil Liberty, 1825-1837

Among the various moral reform and benevolence movements in the Jacksonian Era such as temperance, antislavery, prison reform, and the peace movement, one of the lesser known efforts sought to improve the observance of the Christian Sabbath, or the Lord’s Day. Both terms were used in the nineteenth century, the former preferred by Presbyterians and the latter by Baptists, and…
Forrest L. Marion
November 27, 2014