Thursday, June 10, 2010

Rebel flag doesn’t inspire everyone

What is it with school officials at South allowing the display of the Confederate flag and mascot for so long? When some of us were more complacent than we should have been, there were lots of incidents involving the display of what some now are claiming is their Southern heritage. Just the other day, I had the glorious opportunity to travel behind an old pickup truck with an over-sized Confederate flag flown from the back and smaller flags on bumper as well. Needless to say I was thrilled when I had to turn the opposite way of that display of Southern “pride.” Would there be a person of German descent waving a flag bearing a swastika? Both are failed ideas from eras past. They certainly cannot think of themselves as patriotic Americans waving a flag of the government that lost in one of our most vile and deadly wars. The federal government does not allow the Confederate flag to fly on federal buildings, and the same should apply to schools.
No one denies anyone the right to personally fly the flag of your choice in your home or on your property. I don’t have a problem with the Confederate flags I’ve seen in official places — carefully placed as part of Civil War memorials, for instance. I’ve even seen them flying in some states at city halls and statehouses and on the lawns where there’s a plaque about the Civil War. I can live with that. That acknowledges history while not expressing explicit state support of the Confederacy. The Confederate flag is not a symbol of Southern heritage. A flag should be a symbol that everyone looks upon with the same stirring feelings of shared beliefs and shared commitment. Clearly, not all the students can look upon the Confederate flag with the same shared feelings.
Linda C. Bly