Just Cloth on a Stick?

Today we honor the men and women that died in service to their country but does that include the soilders from the Confederate States of America? After all, Memorial Day was adapted from Decoration Day, an observance that honored Confederate soldiers. As we all know, the State of Mississippi is the ONLY state clinging to the Confederate flag as a representation of their state. Keep in mind, the flag was adopted in 1894. Depending on who you ask, the flag represents honor, duty, courage but it also represents segregation, Jim Crow and is often recognized as a symbol of hate. In recent news, Gov. Phil Bryant of Mississippi, touted the great strides made in race relations but keep in mind that in the State of Mississippi, they can't honor Martin Luther King, Jr. without adding a Confederate general. But, in his eyes, we're making progress. There are some that view the Confederate flag as a symbol of hate and others view it as a symbol of their heritage. For those that tout the historical relevance of the Confederate flag, I find it odd that whenever it's used at Klan rallies or Aryan Nation events, there's no outrage for using the symbol of their heritage to promote hate. Apparently, there's not much difference. So let's just say it represents a heritage of hate. Regardless of where you stand, I don't think a person is going to change because of a flag but their willingness to embrace a symbol of hate gives one some insight on how they're thinking.

In Keokuk, Iowa there's a National Cemetery that serves as the final resting place for 4,000 soldiers, sailors and air force personnel. The cemetary is also the burial site for hundreds of Union and Confederate soldiers. On Memorial Day, it's not unusual to see graves decorated with Confederate flags and graves decorated with US flags. In my opinion, the Confederate flag should be embraced by those that want to honor their relatives that fought for their belief but I do not think a state should use the Confederate flag to represent a diverse group of citizens. We cannot bury history or pretend the Civil War never happened. However, to say that this flag represents an entire state is wholly inappropriate. There are people who argue that the Confederate flag is an innocent symbol of Southern heritage. While that might be true for some, it means something completely different to others. Its original purpose was to serve as a symbol for a collection of states that fought against a united country and propagated slavery. So, if we're going by historical meaning, that's what it stands for. No matter your belief, we are the United States of America, not two separate bodies. I sometimes wonder when people refer to the State of Mississippi as the poorest state in the union, are they just referring to economics or character?

Comments

  1. I don't give a hang whether the state flag has the remnants of the battle flag in it or not, Vote it out!
    Oh wait-tried that already. Just hang in there, it will be gone in a couple or more generations probably.

    ReplyDelete

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