I understand I may make some angry with this post. It is NOT my intent. Please read the WHOLE blog before you form an opinion about me, about the flag, or even what your real argument is about.
I recently had a conversation with a non white male about the confederate flag and all of the drama around it. So many people are focused on the Confederate Flag and how it represents so much hate and horrible ideas but as the discussion continued between the two of us, I stated to him the “N” word is just like the Confederate Flag and the conversation got even more intense.
His argument: The Confederate Flag is a representation of hate and was designed around white supremacy, and therefore should be gone.
My Argument: The Confederate Flag is a representation of Southern Pride and / or of country life, and has nothing to do with hate except for those who allow hate and racism to enter their lives.
His Argument: But the history of it shows it represents something else.
My argument: But history shows the true meaning of the word Negro and the “N” word and why it should not be used by ANYONE but there are those who choose to ignore it and give it it’s own meaning. How is the “N” word any different than the Confederate Flag, it’s just different groups supporting the two sides.
Now mind you, I was driving across state heading from Michigan to Missouri so I couldn’t take the time to break it down with facts about the Confederate Flag and I wanted to refresh my memory of the N word before I stated facts.
Please understand, I am not trying to divide the races even further, but rather to get everyone to understand similarities exist, even when we don’t want to see it.
Let’s look at some true facts first…..the term “Confederate Flag” is used when people are talking about this flag:
But the Confederate Flag actually looked like this:
William Thompson, who designed the Confederate Flag DID say it was the “White Man’s Flag” but the Rebel Flag, causing all the uproar right now, was designed by Willliam Porcher Miles. Was Miles racist? Probably. He was a Southern man living during a time when the country was divided. Yes, he was known as a slave owner, but so were some of our earlier presidents and key men in our history. I’m not here to discuss slavery.
The history of the Confederate Battle Flag or Rebel Flag
The Confederate Battle Flag was just that, a battle flag. It was NOT a representation of slavery, it was just the battle flag of the south. There have been people saying it flew on slave ships. Not true. The south NEVER owned any slave ships. Technically, the slave ships were from the New England State, the dutch, and the Portuguese, NOT the south! It wasn’t even a southern NATIONAL flag, it was JUST a battle flag. When racist groups, such as neo-nazis and skinheads choose to use this flag as “their” flag, they are, in fact desecrating the Confederate Flag and technically have no right to use it. There are southern men and women who lost their loved ones, their ancestors, who died under that flag flying. While we may not agree with WHAT they were fighting for, they have every right to want to respect the flag that represents THEIR history. You don’t have to agree with something to respect it. Black men, of their own free will, chose to fight under this very same flag that everyone is saying represents white men only. So not true. There are a lot of myths surrounding the Civil War. It wasn’t as simple as the north was free and the south was slavery. It goes so much further.
Before I get into my deep comparison, think of a tradition such as “jumping the broom” that was passed on from ancestors to today. A white person living in a predominately white town may have no idea what “Jumping the broom” means, but that doesn’t make them hate it or fight to have it removed from the weddings of those who choose to keep that tradition. Yes, I understand there is a difference between someone choosing to have a tradition at their wedding vs a flag flying high on a government building. All I’m trying to say is to understand the meaning TODAY behind something before you get upset, not the meaning the media or hate groups want you to believe.
47% of those polled only think of the Confederate Battle Flag as a symbol of pride in the south. They don’t even know the history of it other than that.
This leads me to the N word…..
Negro comes from the Greek word Necro meaning dead, empty of life, corpse. Now, I can say I choose to never use the N word or the word Negro but there are those who choose to use it as a sign of empowerment, indicating that, by using the word, they are taking it back and taking the negativity away from it. But it comes with rules. It is not OK for EVERYONE to use it. Who decides? At the end of the day, some use it almost like a word of pride. I personally don’t understand how a word representing death and empty of life is a word to be proud of, but it’s not for me to understand because it isn’t MY history.
At the same time, I would hope those who CAN understand the pride that goes with the N word for themselves or those they know would look deep in their hearts to understand how the Confederate Battle Flag can be a source of PRIDE for those with Southern Roots.
The south wasn’t the only one who owned slaves. There was slavery in the north as well. In fact, there were some slave owners in the north that tried to ignore the laws even after Emancipation Proclamation.
At the end of the day, we don’t have to agree with something in order to be accepting of it. Try to gain a little better understanding of WHY one group supports something, even when you may not and ask them to understand the things you support. By taking the time to understand and appreciate another point of view, there will be less knee jerk reactions to all situations.
All I ask if for you to think about it, consider what I’m saying, and try to understand a point of view different than your own; it might just help make the world, and relationships with others, a little better!