move along... it's time

So, I've been thinking about current events. Many monumental issues right now, how can I not think about them? What it boils down to for me is this: I'm a lifelong northerner, living in the nation's least ethnically diverse state. I don't know and can't relate to the African-American struggle. What I can relate to is the culture of hate. Historically, the "Stars & Bars" represented Civil War era soldiers, however, after the Civil War, several white supremacist groups (the White Knights, the KKK, and others) used the flag as their symbol, distorting an honorable war memento into a symbol of repression.

I get why people are riled up. For a lot of us, removed from the deeper meanings of the flag, it seems like a symbol of "good ol' boys" and "redneck culture," relatively meaningless and harmless. But historically, it's got more meaning than that. Many southern states began including the flag at state and federal buildings during the Civil Rights Era, making a statement that not everything would change. I do think it's time the government shed itself of the flag and all it has come to represent.

We've prided ourselves as being a nation based on freedom and liberty for all and it's time to ante up and be that. If we are a nation of inclusion, of freedom, of liberty, of justice, then we need to move on from the symbols of a bygone era. And I don't think it's living in a culture of political correctness, as others have argued. It's acknowledging the history of our nation and moving forward. It's not erasing the past or covering it up, it's acknowledging and moving on. And it's time. It's time for Americans to live up to the ideal the Founders set forth, they certainly acknowledged their own hypocrisy--although most people are unaware of the Commerce (Slave Trade) Compromise and other ways the slavery issue was skirted at the formation of the nation. The teacher in me could go on and on, but basically that's what I've got on the flag issue.

1 comment:

Paula said...

I have absolutely no problem with the flags being removed from government buildings. However, I think they are just taking it too far. As the media often does. I mean really....taking the Dukes of Hazard off TV. That, to me, is simply going too far. And to stop selling the flag at Wal-Mart and Amazon seems to take the right of owning one away from those who are okay with it. I think it is just a piece of cloth. Getting rid of the flag will not get rid of the prejudices. People need to do that!!