Sorry to hear of your bad reception. IMO, I think it is still too fresh in everyone's mind to start WWII re-enacting. Imagine re-enacting the civil war in 1911 when veterans from the war were still around. I imagine that would not have been well-received...
As for me,
I was born in NY, but spent 10 of my most formative years growing up in S.C.
I'm not sure what people in previous posts mean when they talk about where their "sentiments" lie. I am against slavery and hate that our fair country kept the practice alive as long as it did. It should have been stamped out at the first founding of Jamestown. However, I also believe in State's rights and the statements made in the Declaration of Independence: "...it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security." Both the Blue and Gray had valid points and ideologies - which is what makes that war such a complex and visceral one.
All that being said - NONE of that played ANY role in our decision as to which "side" to re-enact. When my wife and I decided that our entire family (us +3 kids) wanted to take this up as a hobby, we started visiting units as spectators. We looked around until we found a family-friendly unit where we fealt like we "fit in". We came upon our current unit, the 1st Regiment KY Volunteers Co.E of Longstreet's Corps, and at that first meeting it was like we had stumbled on long lost family. We were welcomed as though they had always known us for a very long time. THAT was what made our minds up - not an ideology.
Did it matter to me that it was a Confederate unit? No. Do I feel like I have to defend the 1860's confederate viewpoints to justify my decision on whom to re-enact with? No. It's a hobby. Go where you heart leads you and where you have fun. Do your research and be as accurate as you can - but have fun.
Pvt. Matt O'Driscoll
1st Regiment KY Volunteers, Co.E