Confederate flag brings conflict

More stories from Cora Bennett

The Confederate flag is racist. The majority of the people who support the Confederate flag claim that they only support it because it represents Southern heritage. I have also heard people say that they are trying to “redefine” the Confederate flag; how are you going to redefine a flag that has strong ties to hundreds of years of slavery? What sense does that make?

While this may be true, you have to acknowledge its ties to slavery and other ways of oppressing African Americans. The Confederate flag was used as a symbol of state resistance to human rights during the Civil Rights Movement.

Mississippi still has the Confederate flag as a part of their state flag. This is absolutely astonishing to me that in 2019, almost 2020, an entire state still has the Confederate flag as their state flag.

In 1956 after the supreme court case, Brown v. Board of Education ruled in favor of desegregating schools, Georgia changed its state flag to incorporate the Confederate flag. Do you really believe that they just all of a sudden decided to change it? No, they changed it to show their opposition to Brown v. Board’s decision.

If the flag has nothing to do with race then why did they use it support their ways? If the flag has nothing to do with race then why do members of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), a group known for its hate of African Americans and other minority peoples, tote it around at all of their rallies? The Confederate flag also has made appearances at Trump rallies.

According to a poll conducted in 2015 by CNN approximately 72% of African Americans see the flag as a symbol of racism. Specifically in the South, the racial gap is quite large. Seventy-five percent of Southern African Americans believe the flag symbolizes racism, and only 11% view it as pride.

For Southern white people these statistics are almost exactly flipped with 75% seeing it as pride, and 18% calling it a symbol of racism. Also, the more educated white people were, the more even the polls. Among whites with a college degree, 51% said it was a symbol of pride, 41% one of racism. Among the whites with no degree 73% said it was a sign of pride, 18% say racism.

Another thing that boggles my mind is, in my experience everyone that I have seen supporting the flag is what I deem extremely patriotic. So my question is, if you love this country so much, why are you supporting the flag of the people who wanted to break off and start a new country? Especially when slavery was going to be allowed in this new country.

Why are you supporting the flag of the government who declared war on the United States in order to preserve white supremacy and the enslavement of millions of humans.

The Southerners who supported the Confederate flag and believed in racial segregation, once hated the traditional American flag so much that they would pull people from their cars and beat them simply for displaying a American flag.  While some may argue that the Confederate flag may indeed be ”heritage, not hate,” the part of their history that they are celebrating is inseparable from hate, because it is hate.

It’s about racism, and it’s about slavery. In a perfect country, I beleive we would get rid of the flag completely, but this country is far from it. In the end we are all human and we have the choice to support what we want.

All I ask, is that if you do support the Confederate flag, recognize its ties to racism, oppression, and slavery, not only the “better” parts.