When the issue of the confederate flag recently came back in the spotlight, I was on the side of those defending the freedom to fly it. It’s a part of U.S. history that shouldn’t be forgotten (but not because it’s anything to be proud of when it comes to race relations). There is so much more to “The South” than slavery and racism and all the stuff we hear in the news about what the flag may or may not represent.
On a trip from Tennessee to Missouri I saw these 2 trucks and snapped a few pictures. With plenty of time in the car I tried to put myself in the place of those asking for the flag’s removal, mostly black people as far as I know. And it worked. The scenario I imagined was my nieces living in a city where they were mistreated for decades. Over time, most people there were awakened to what equality is, treating others as they’d want to be treated, and realizing they were wrong about my nieces being less than them. So this city had a flag and even after the renewed respect in the city, some still flew the flag representing the outdated actions of the city’s inhabitants. My blood boiled and then I understood. To my nieces, this flag is a reminder of their mistreatment.
In America, it’s not about north or south (both sides had slaves). It’s not even about preserving history (although if we forget it, we’ll repeat it). It’s about people.
The conclusion to my hypothetical scenario and the real-life conflict we’re in today is this: People are more important than things. People are more important than flags. If it comes down to respecting your neighbor, try to understand where they’re coming from and make the choice that elevates the person above tradition.
-Out of the Wilderness