Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Confederate Flag: Should it Stay or Go?

With that picture above, I’m sure I’m setting myself up to be called a racist for daring to put a picture of the Confederate flag on the top. My answer? Get over yourself. If you continue to read, and believe, you may understand my position on this. If you just accept the picture as my position and don’t bother with my words, my thoughts, my beliefs, the problem is yours, not mine.

The confederate flag is a part of our history. Not just Northern States history and not just Southern States history but American history. The Civil War was not just about slavery although slavery was the largest part of the reason for the Civil War. It was also about freedom of speech, clearly defined  and separate rights of the states, mandates on runaway slaves and expansion into Cuba. As a good friend of mine in the south says, the Civil War was really the war of Northern Aggression.

This came about again because of a shooting where nine people were killed in South Carolina by a 21 year old shooter who had pictures of himself with the Confederate Flag and another with the American flag but the American Flag he set on fire, held it up and took his picture. Now South Carolina is under fire for still flying the Confederate Flag on the grounds at the State Capitol.

Now we have national monuments being desecrated. Including Thomas Jefferson, and calling for the elimination of monuments of Confederate soldiers and leaders, such as Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis.

This nation was fought for by farmers, shopkeepers, and even teenagers. They fought the strongest empire in the world at the time. It took over six years but eventually, they defeated that empire and won their freedom. They won our freedom! To create this country, even to declare its’ independence, it took some compromises. One of the most hypocritical compromises was about slaves. The Declaration of Independence says “We hold these truths to be self evident. That all men are created equal”. Yet, to get that declaration voted on unanimously, they had to agree not to rid itself of slavery.

In writing the Constitution following the war, there was more compromise in Article 1 Section 9, protecting the slave trade for twenty years. That twenty year period was completed on January 1, 1808. In December 1806 President Jefferson (that would be Thomas Jefferson who’s monument was desecrated) called for the criminalization on the first day that the Constitution allowed. In March 1807 the Congress passed and President Jefferson signed that law and it took effect on January 1, 1808, the very first day that it was constitutionally permitted.

Eleven states seceded from the United States and created their own flag to rally behind. They wanted the same thing that the Union wanted. Freedom. But this time, the Union states were fighting for freedom of slavery, while the rebel states were fighting for freedom to choose their own way of life which had been in place all of their lives. Americans fought against Americans. Approximately, 620,000 died during that war, all believing they died for freedom. That’s more than died in all of our other wars combined until the Vietnam war. Now it’s estimated that 640,000 have died in all of the other wars yet the American civil war claimed 620,000 souls alone. 

Slavery was wrong and is still wrong. It was wrong for us to declare all men are created equal but not live up to that belief for the first 80 years of our nations existence. But it is part of our history and should be out there for us and for others to remember. Not to look back on as the ‘good old days’ but to learn from our mistakes so they aren’t repeated in the future.

We beat the British in the Revolution. The British failed to retake us in the War of 1812. We won the Mexican-American War. We fought in several wars including two world wars ,the Indian wars, Korea, Vietnam and the war on terror. We do not fly the flags of other countries on the Capitol grounds of any state in this country. So Governor Nikki Haley coming out and calling for the removal of the Confederate Flag in South Carolina was I believe, a good move. That doesn’t mean to ban it for private citizens that may fly it as a memory of their ancestors or for any other reason they may want to fly that flag. As far as the States and Federal Government, the flag should be in museums as part of our history. By the way, the Civil War ended 150 years ago. 

We have a history in this nation that we should be proud of. Unfortunately, there are some things in our history that we should be ashamed of. Slavery is one that we should be ashamed of.

The shooter of the nine Americans at the church in South Carolina apparently confessed to hating people and shooting them because of their race. However, the family of those nine and the parishioners of that church came out publicly and forgave the shooter. He shot those nine people because of skin pigmentation and they forgive him.

I believe that this incident is exactly what this nation is all about. It’s not about gun control. It’s not about racism. It’s not about hatred. There were nine that died. Their family and parishioners forgave the shooter. That’s maybe 100 people that forgave the one. I’ll take the 100 forgiving Americans over the 1 hate filled American each and every day and tell you that this is what this country is really about. We have some bad apples but we have many more that are the embodiment of what this country is all about and the people of South Carolina showed the best of America against one that is the worst of America.

You’re welcome to comment.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

A couple points: First, the civil war began when the southern states wanted freedom. AS with the American revolution, the real issue was money. The north was industrial, the south rural. The north was waging economic war long before the out break of shooting. Lincoln threw in the slaves because he feared foreign governments would side with the south, but realized they would not if the issue became slavery. Second, the stars and bars are history and only represent slavery because the north says it does. And the winners write the history. The stars and stripes flew on slave ships (most of which docked in Boston) and flew over horrors to many to count. Ban the stars and strips. The cross was used by the Klan to terrorize (by democrats by the way)free blacks and others deemed not worthy of living. Ban the cross. My point is that this whole issue of banning the stars and bars is a cover up for the real issue (or contrived issue) which is white racism. The elite will do anything and everything to pull attention away from their treason and avoid actually examining the real issues in this country.