Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Confederate Flag

I'm okay with the Confederate Flag. Some folks may take umbrage with this statement. But I'm okay with the flag. Just as I'm okay with the Pride Flag, that gorgeous rainbow flag that represents LGBTQ communities across the globe. I'm even okay with the other countries flags being displayed - as long as none of them are flown above the American Flag. No need to insult our veterans who have fought and died for the American Flag, our right to say our minds, and our safety.

Banning the Confederate Flag (how many times can I type that?) won't resolve the underlying issues. Banning it also has us running the risk of forgetting what it represents. We should never forget ANY part of the Civil War. I happen to be old enough to have a grandmother who was old enough, with a grand-father (my great-grandfather) still alive that had fought in the Civil War. He told her the ugly stories of the war, glorified nothing about it, and made sure she, her siblings, and cousins understood they needed to share these stories with their own children and grandchildren. Because, as he said "We never, ever want another drop of blood spilled on this soil as a result of an internal war." My family had family on both sides of that fight, as so many families did. But ours is a country that fought to free people from slavery and we should never forget that.

Rather, we should teach our kids about our flags. Teach them what they stood for, the truth about the wars fought on this soil, no glorifying either side, and let them think for themselves about what it means to have war on our own soil. Let them know how fortunate we are, that we are not a perfect country, we have work to do still, but don't forget where we've been, how far we've come and how far we have to go.

So leave the flag. Don't drown out or water down the history of our bloody Civil War, or the Revolutionary War, or the Indian War. To do so begs us to forget the lessons learned and dooms us to repeat our mistakes.

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