Lexington City Council voted 4-1 to ban the Confederate flag from city owned flagpoles. Personal displays of the flag are still allowed.
Sons of Confederate Veterans and a few local blacks rallied in downtown Lexington, Virginia against the ban and vowed to fight the new law in court. Descendants of Confederate soldiers claim that their ancestors have a right to be honored in their hometown. Former NAACP Asheville, NC chapter president, H.K. Edgerton, said he supported the public display of the flag because it honors black Confederate soldiers.
The Confederate flag offends the majority of African Americans to this day. They don’t care if blacks fought on the Confederate side during the Civil War. The way they see it, blacks of the past had no choice because they were still slaves at the time. Everyone knows what happened to slaves when they didn’t obey the master.
Former and current black residents were offended by the rally and the participation of three black men. Below are quotes from former residents.
“They really think the south will rise again. Unbelievable, but not surprised,” said Ada.
“Only there – is B.S. like this acceptable, so glad I moved,” said A.J.
“We aren’t brandishing the other flags that our country used from its earlier history. Why cherish this particular flag, especially when it represents a way of life that most of our ancestors did not get to enjoy or profit from? Ridiculous cultural pickin’ n’ choosin’. Let it go, and let’s stop fighting this long dead war and move forward. I find the war a fascinating period in our history, think it was impossible to grow up where we did and not be a little obsessed with it, but the flag has come to represent redneckery and racism to me more than Southern sentimentality,” said Karen.
Why is This Still an Issue?
The Civil War ended in 1865. Some Virginia residents still call Northerners Yankees for Pete’s Sake. It is time for Caucasians and African Americans to let the Confederate flag go. Aren’t there bigger things to worry about, like homelessness, blatant racism concerning employment and promotions, and the fall of the dollar?
Free speech rights have not been violated. They just banned the flag on city owned property, which residents of all races pay taxes for, so to represent everyone in the city it was fair to take a vote and do what the majority wanted. Residents can still wear Confederate flag t-shirts in public and fly the flag on their personal property. The first amendment protects everyone and everything even if it is offensive to some people. That is the price of freedom in America.
Don’t forget that freedom goes both ways. When African Americans want to wear a Malcolm X t-shirt or fly a Nation of Islam (NOI) flag in their yard, they are protected by the first amendment even though it is offensive to some whites, like the Confederate flag is to some blacks.
“Va. City Bans Public Confederate Flag Displays,” CBS News.
Steve Szkotak, “Virginia City Limits Confederate Flag Flying in Burial Place of Robert Lee, Stonewall Jackson,” Newser.com