For some Americans, renouncing the Confederate flag is a hard task.
For any number of reasons, U.S. citizens are attached to the symbol of Southern history. In Alabama and South Carolina, the Governors removed the Confederate flag from the statehouses.
Presidential candidates, irrespective of political party are united by the belief that this symbol is too divisive for the American society to be displayed officially anywhere.
Nonetheless, the flag, a reminiscence of the secessionist battle is still upheld in the South and elsewhere. Retailers and flag-makers alike announced that the Confederate flag will no longer be produced or sold. It will in time become a relic and, as many hope, a piece of museum exhibitions.
Yet, it is hard for some to renounce what they see not only as an American cultural symbol, albeit its controversial history, but a symbol of their own Southern heritage.
One statement cited:
“I’ve got nothing against black people; I’ve got nothing against anyone else. I’m just very proud of my Southern heritage. That’s why I fly it”.
Feelings are mixed at the recent rallies in support of the Confederate flag. Here, Southern pride mixed with challenging federal authority and more controversial views in general. That was the case at the Georgia Confederate flag rally, taking place in Georgia’s Stone Mountain Park, harboring the “Confederate Memorial Carving”.
The media has been buzzing this summer with news of the Confederate flag. The fact that two of the most brutal shootings in South Carolina and Louisiana were linked to the ostentatious flying of the flag added more fuel to the fire. The uncomfortable silence surrounding the historical symbolism of the flag was brought to the frontlines.
Dylan Roof, the young who shot nine black people as they attended their church service in Charleston, South Carolina, burned the U.S. flag as a sign of contempt for federal authority. Later photos portrayed the young man posing with the Confederate flag as a dear reminder of the cruel Southern history. He stands trial for over 30 federal charges.
The declared right-wing extremist who shot two people deadly and injured another nine is the Louisiana movie theater before he shot himself dead was also proudly flying the Confederate flag at his doorstep. A Nazi swastika was hung outside his Georgia based bar.
It is saddening, but it is a reality that the Confederate flag reminds many of a cruel history that was thought to be part of museum archives by now.
Following the Charleston shooting, the Governor of South Carolina, Nikki Haley removed the flag from the state house, calling it
“a deeply offensive symbol of a brutally oppressive past”.
Politicians from across the political spectrum mirrored the same opinion.
Photo Credits: ibtimes.com