Flag poll: Why the Confederate flag should be taken down
For a country that prides itself in being the most advanced and powerful country in the world, the brutal and racist reality that we aren’t what we claim to be is slowly creeping in as slanderous after slanderous attacks on the black and other minority communities continue to happen.
Last week, the deranged and blatantly racist Dylann Storm Roof shot nine people in Charleston, South Carolina, at the Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. Reports say that Roof targeted the victims specifically due to their race.
While many would argue that terrorist attacks rarely happen in the U.S. this is without a doubt a classified terrorist attack; it was executed to inflict terror among a certain group of people.
Now, authorities and citizens alike are rallying to tear down the Confederate flag from the flagpole at the S.C. capital, and for good reason. For the families and close friends of the shooting victims, the flag is a painful reminder of America’s inability to get over its ramshackled and violent past.
Bottom line is the Confederacy is dead. End of story. No ifs, ands, or buts. It’s not the place of a government flagpole to represent the “Southern pride” of racism and mud wrestling.
The governor of S.C., Nikki Haley, spoke last week regarding the public’s response to the flag being up. She agrees that although Southern pride is an integral part of the state, the flag should be taken down.
The flag symbolizes more than wifebeater shirts and high cholesterol. It’s a tragic reminder of the South’s legacy in demeaning the status of any minority. The Confederate flag represents that man at the post office complaining about people not speaking English at his good, Christian pizza shop. It’s everything wrong with discrimination.
Even the designer of the original Confederate flag, William Thompson, intended the flag to be a symbol of white supremacy. In his original manifesto, he wrote this: “As a people, we are fighting to maintain the heaven ordained supremacy of the white man over the inferior or colored race.”
That’s right. Even the man who made the flag knew it was about racism and not Southern pride.
Many Southern-pride fighters such as the Sons of Confederate Veterans are fighting to keep the flag flying high over the state capital, but their arguments about it representing a historic era are faulty at best. Yes, the Confederacy was a historic (and dark) part of U.S. history, but history isn’t always pretty. And oppressive history such as the Confederacy should be kept in a museum where it belongs, and not flying high like a middle finger at the heart of the state.
For the families suffering from their loss in the aftermath of the shooting, it remains a great injustice that the flag remains up. It was the battle flag of the shooter, and similar to the swastikas that the Nazis wore. Those sorts of symbols shouldn’t be flown in the victims’ faces as a reminder.