[BCN editor’s note: I was born and raised in the South, and I’ve seen plenty of Confederate flags — on bumper stickers, hanging from poles, etc. Not once have I ever felt fear, intimidation, resentment, or anger.]
Image for representational purposes only.
In the days since a tragic shooting killed nine parishioners at a Charleston, S.C., church, national media outlets have seized on a peripheral conversation about the display of a Confederate flag near the state’s Capitol building.
Several reports surfaced Wednesday, shortly after slain Pastor Clementa Pinckney’s body was laid in honor inside the Capitol, pointing out that his casket was carried past that Confederate flag on the way to the viewing. While some reporters obviously saw this development as newsworthy, recent information indicates Pinckney supported the Confederate flag’s display at the Statehouse.
As a state senator, Pinckney cast a vote in favor of House Resolution 5028, which related “to the permanent placement of the United States Flag, the South Carolina State Flag, and the South Carolina Infantry Battle Flag of the Confederate States of America” and was signed into law in 2000.
Twitter users reacted to the revelation, with several contending that the Confederate flag does not have any ties to racism.
Others concluded the tragic shooting has been hijacked by leftists who intend to turn a national debate into the denigration of a particular flag and its supporters.
At least one diplomatic reader suggested a compromise that would get rid of the Confederate flag while retaining the ideals of liberty and freedom many associate with it.
“Let’s replace the confederate [sic] flag with the Don’t Tread on Me flag,” the user wrote, referring to the Gadsden flag, which in recent years has become associated with the tea party movement.
Is the Confederate flag a symbol of America’s racism? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
BCN editor’s note: This article first appeared at Western Journalism.