Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Terror and Treason

Believe it or not there are people out there who do not support the United States. I know, its shocking. There are people who dislike our government, and our way of life. But I'm not talking about foreign powers, or hidden enemy agents, I'm talking about other Americans. There is a symbol of open rebellion that is flown in many parts of our country. I speak of none other than the Confederate Stars and Bars.

That's right, there are states that still fly the Stars and Bars over their government offices, be they local or state. My question is, how do we, as a nation, allow a symbol of open rebellion to fly over any number of state capitals in this alleged union?

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for rebellion. Even Ben Franklin said something about needing to overthrow the government every so often. But I also believe that the Confederate flag represents a few things, and ain’t none of them good. Take slavery for example. Now I imagine you’d be hard pressed to find someone today who would support slavery in a public forum, unless you allowed them to wear a white hood while they said it. But by flying the Stars and Bars governments are promoting and showing allegiance to a pro-slavery symbol. Or, if you think slavery is too harsh an example, how about just plain hatred? Is it a coincidence that the KKK carries the Stars and Bars in their rallies?

Some people claim that the Confederate flag is simply a historical item that represents Southern heritage. Of course, Southern heritage is closely tied to slavery, anti-civil rights legislation/ demonstration, and the KKK. Or how about this quote from Confederate Vice President Alexander Stephenson, “Our new government is founded upon the great truth, that the Negro is not equal to the White man.”

Here are some more quotes from flag supporters found in an abcnews.com article

abcnews.go.com/sections/us/ DailyNews/flag000406.html

“Jerry Sullivan, who wore a Confederate flag as a cape, said Riley had a new nickname, “LBJ, Little Black Joe, because of what he’s doing today.”

“‘They want a nice, multi-ethnic society and they know they can’t have it,’ said Lake High, former South Carolina League of the South chairman, accusing liberals, the media and Washington politicians of targeting Southern heritage.”

Long live the South! OK, here’s where the Rant gets controversial, ready? Flying the confederate flag in the south, where oppressed people, the progeny of former slaves, the children of the civil rights movement live and work is like flying the Afghani flag at ground zero. Flying the Stars and Bars attempts to legitimize and preserve the ideology behind one of the greatest evils in American history. And to do it to the very people who are still oppressed today, is deplorable.

I believe in freedom of speech. Individuals who wish to preserve and display the Confederate flag should be allowed to do so, but the government, all governments, from the Feds to your local PTA should remove the Stars and Bars from any and all public spaces. Anything else should be considered an act of treason against the United States. There is no middle ground. We cannot, and should not tolerate a symbol of hate to fly over those whom it oppresses.
6:16 pm edt

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