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Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/14/2018 08:27:57


Clint Eastwood
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The Civil War was not fought over slavery, it was fought over states' rights. Slavery was on the way out. In 1860, 1.4% of Southern people owned slaves. Even Robert E. Lee had released his slaves 7 years prior to the beginning of the Civil War because he believed it to be immoral (which it obviously is, no one is questioning that).

Even if it was fought over slavery, why the war was fought is irrelevant to the fact that the Confederate Flag is not a symbol of racism or slavery, it's a symbol of Southern pride.

If an exchange student from Germany came to the US and waved the German flag, no one would mind. "He's allowed to take pride in his heritage and homeland," they would say, despite the fact that Germany was once an evil dictatorship responsible for the deaths of millions, far more deaths than the CSA was responsible for. (Please note that I am not conflating the present-day German flag with the WWII era Nazi flag. I am simply saying that, in the same way that Germany used to be a terrible place for certain people, so was once the USA.)

The Confederate Flag, Bonnie Blue, the first national flag, etcetera--all symbols of Southern pride. Not racism. If people from Saudi Arabia, Belarus, Lesotho, Nepal, Mexico, and so on, are all allowed to proudly wave their flag and pay homage to their heritage and homeland within US borders without criticism, then why not Southerners? Why is it an Iranian immigrant can proudly wave their flag and pay respect to their homeland--their evil, oppressive homeland--and people applaud, but the minute a Southerner even talks, let alone waves a flag, he's laughed off as a white supremacist?

I know white supremacists--in Charleston, for example--oftentimes wave the Confederate flag. But trust me, as a die-hard Southerner who proudly waves said flag--I think those people are deplorable. They're a disgrace to our flag. Just like the wild acts of Antifa don't represent leftists, the neo-nazis in Charleston don't represent conservatives or Southerners.

I am a conservative, and I live in the South, and I live way out in the backcountry, as is the same with all of my family and most of my friends. And you know what? I've never met a racist person. Ever. We have more blacks and Hispanics than any other part of the country, and, aside from the Southwest, more Native Americans too. My best friend is Mexican, the girl that I plan to marry is Navajo, and I'm not 100% white myself. Why the fuck would I be a white supremacist?

If the Confederate Flag still offends you, that's fine. But if it offends you, I expect you to be equally offended at the Iranian, North Korean, Soviet Union, etc., flags as well. You can't pick and choose.

Note: I am not saying foreigners don't have the right to take pride in their heritage and homeland. They totally do. It's a free country. But if they do, so do we.

TL;DR Go back up and read it. It ain't that long.


Signed, a Southerner who's tired of being shit on by everyone north of Mason-Dixon

Edited 3/17/2018 07:21:42
- downvoted post by Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/14/2018 14:18:53


Strategery
Level 56
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I completely agree. I don't mean to make this partisan but as the south got less racists it became more republican.
- downvoted post by Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/14/2018 17:05:20


OxTheAutist 
Level 58
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HERITAGE NOT HATE let's celebrate the country that was banded together by slavery and nothing else
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/14/2018 17:25:28


Empire of Kilos
Level 32
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I love all my Flags, Especially the Stars and Bars, because people stupid enough to attack/rob you over the Virgina Battle flag are too stupid to know what it is most of the time.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/14/2018 19:17:45


Zephyrum
Level 60
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HERITAGE NOT HATE let's celebrate the country that was banded together by slavery and nothing else


...Most of them?

Technically we're all banded in artificial Roman Imperial borders, and Rome itself was a very pro-slavery society.

And most borders not directly affected by Rome were affected by countries directly affected by it's heirs.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/15/2018 02:28:43


Padraig
Level 50
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You are wrong.

On 21 March 1862 Alexander Stephens remarked upon the principles of the Constitution of the Confederate States of America. Stephens was at that time the Vice President of the Confederacy. What follows are excerpts from those remarks, the Cornerstone Speech.

"the new Constitution has put at rest forever all the agitating questions relating to our peculiar institutions-African slavery as it exists among us-the proper status of the negro in our form of civilization."


"The prevailing ideas entertained by (Jefferson) and most of the leading statesmen at the time of the formation of the old Constitution were, that the enslavement of the African was in violation of the laws of nature; that it was wrong in principle, socially, morally and politically. It was an evil they knew not well how to deal with; but the general opinion of the men of that day was, that, somehow or other, in the order of Providence, the institution would be evanescent and pass away. This idea, though not incorporated in the Constitution, was the prevailing idea at the time."

"Those ideas, however, were fundamentally wrong. They rested upon the assumption of the equality of races. This was an error."

"Our new Government is founded upon exactly the opposite ideas; its foundations are laid, its cornerstone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery, subordination to the superior race, is his natural and moral condition. This, our new Government, is the first, in the history of the world, based upon this great physical, philosophical, and moral truth."


If you assert , however high Stephens' station in the Confederacy, that his remarks were those of a private individual without the force of being a general principle, then I would point you towards the various documents of secession of the particular rebelling governments. They make no secret of the fact that they were acting in defense of slavery.

The flags of the Confederacy were symbols of those people who rejected the idea that all men should be equal before the law. As such the taint of racism is a permanent stain on those flags. It can not be got out. How you or any person react to that fact is a matter of choice. But that choice has no material effect upon that basic fact. It might be said that the battle flag serves as a reminder of men who were bravely defending their home states. As true as that statement is, as true as it may be that those flags can be symbols of pride, they are also -and have always been- symbols of the notion that the white race should oppress the black.

Alexander Stephens, Cornerstone Speech: http://www.csaconstitution.com/p/alexander-h.html

Various States, Declarations of Cause: https://www.civilwar.org/learn/primary-sources/declaration-causes-seceding-states
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/15/2018 05:02:48


Wulfhere
Level 48
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>feelings
>relevant to ethical quandaries
lmao
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/15/2018 06:37:31


Knights Templar
Level 19
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It's all racism ans slavery, end of discussion.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/16/2018 01:55:15


Padraig
Level 50
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Its all racism ...


Nah, it is more complex than that.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/16/2018 03:56:07


Wulfhere
Level 48
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My town literally got shot up by a band of Confederates so it doesn't really make sense to wave that flag here but in other places it does.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/16/2018 11:53:48


{Canidae} Kretoma 
Level 58
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It is sad to see a discussion about such an irrelevant topic.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/16/2018 18:03:00


system0101 
Level 55
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Why is it that people who yearn for the past always pick the biggest losers? Champion the Wehraboos and go 2-for-2
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/16/2018 23:41:11


Cata Cauda
Level 59
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Why cant you guys, like, move on?
We in Austria are more over the Nazi topic 70 years ago than you guys with your much less significant civil war over 1 and a half centuries ago.
Look more at the future and present, instead of the past.

Edited 3/16/2018 23:43:06
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/17/2018 00:00:41


حياة
Level 21
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Then folk'd start talking of more relevant problems, instead of mostly made-up ones. Which the folk causing the relevant problems would of course not want.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/17/2018 03:55:27


Clint Eastwood
Level 59
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Most people here so far have misinterpreted what I said. I never whined about losing the Civil War. I'm not even talking about the Civil War; granted, I did mention it, but that's not the main topic. The topic is the Confederate flag, which was the battle flag of an army 150 years ago. However, today, it's not the same flag it was then. Today it symbolizes Southern American culture. By waving it, we are merely taking pride in our heritage. Other people all over the planet express their pride in their heritage and homeland in different ways; this is our way. I know you don't like (U.S.) Americans, Cata, and you probably hate us Southerners even more so, but surely you can understand that?

That said, the American Civil War, as unfortunate and long ago as it was, plays a huge role in Southern culture. Just because you don't understand it or even like it doesn't mean we should stop just because you're "over the Nazi topic from 70 years ago." Well, excuse us for having a culture of our own. I didn't know we weren't allowed to do that.

Long live Dixie.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/17/2018 05:42:37


Darth Darth Binks
Level 56
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The war wasn't fought to protect states' rights. The war was fought by the North to preserve the Union until 1863, when the fight against slavery was wisely thrown into the pot by a clever Lincoln (who, despite being the least democratic of all U.S. presidents, has my respect as a wartime leader. I'm not sure the North could have won with a lesser man as Chief of State). The blanket term "states' rights" is why the South seceded, and those rights included the big one: slavery. The 'right' that supported the South's economy at all; as well as the North's, for that matter. Sorry if this seems like nitpicky semantics to anyone, but I think this difference matters. Anyway, onto the question posed:

The Confederate flag we see today is not any of the four versions Confederate flag. It is the Confederate Naval jack, commonly mistaken for the Virginian Army's flag, which is a square version of the same design. The flag itself can be and is representative of different things to different people. I don't think the U.S. should be at a point where we are censoring our own history for fear of offending people. Alas, Gettysburg park has taken down ALL flags in order to stay away from controversy (i.e. people protesting en mass because God forbid a Confederate flag is flying on a historical park that preserves the battleground of what I believe to be 1 of 2 game changers in a war that shaped our country into what it is today).

A group of people I don't understand are Northern hicks who fly the Confederate flag. I've even seen a truck with one mounted in its bed. But whatever. I doubt their reasons for flying it, but it is their right to own it and do with it as they wish.

Edited 3/17/2018 05:45:46
- downvoted post by Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/17/2018 06:05:01


Darth Darth Binks
Level 56
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^Because those have no value or meaning to the people in question.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/17/2018 06:06:59

Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!Meow!
Level 7
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^The Confederacy was unfortunately not a fascist state. It could have done much more.

Edited 3/17/2018 06:07:18
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/17/2018 07:17:17


Clint Eastwood
Level 59
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I can fly those flags if I want. I can fly any flag I want to. None of it's illegal. Land of the free.

But I don't want to. I would never even touch those flags unless it was to burn them.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/17/2018 19:45:49


OnlyThePie
Level 53
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Ignoring the historical issues stated at the beginning, lets narrow in on two points I haven't seen yet:

1. So, you pick a flag specifically from a certain period of time where the South engaged in active rebellion against the north to wave as your "Heritage," rather than any other flag (the state flag, the american flag, hell even an old pre-revolution flag).

2. Somewhat related, You're waving about a flag that represented, who was it again, oh right, traitors. That's not patriotism, its barely-restrained separatism.

You're allowed to wave it, but I'm just going to assume you're a nationalist, separatist asshole and/or idiot.

Edited 3/17/2018 19:48:47
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/18/2018 02:35:03


Padraig
Level 50
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Why cant you guys, like, move on?


Fair question. The answer is that how we understand the past colors our understanding of the present. Another answer would be to say that the Civil War was the beginning of a conversation. That conversation has not ended.

The topic is the Confederate flag, which was the battle flag of an army 150 years ago. However, today, it's not the same flag it was then.


That is true too. The Confederate Battle Flag is not the same flag it was during the Civil War. It is also what was added to the flag of the state of Georgia in 1956, and which remained there until 2001 when a new state flag was adopted. In the view of a report which was issued by the State of Georgia the modification of the Georgia flag was in response to an attack on institutionalized segregation along lines of race. The men who changed the flag of Georgia, in 1956, wanted to send a message that segregation would remain in force. A message of unbending pride in what Georgia and the South was.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_of_Georgia_%28U.S._state%29
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/18/2018 03:02:21


Padraig
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As true as it is that the flag has been about segregation and resentment of the U.S. government's rulings on integration there is another side.

The other side of the coin is that the flag has been a symbol of lighthearted rebelliousness, as in Waylon Jennings.

Waylon Jennings, Good Ol' Boys: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qogVHlmFcx0
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/18/2018 03:31:18


Clint Eastwood
Level 59
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You're waving about a flag that represented, who was it again, oh right, traitors.


Have you forgotten that this country only exists because of a few very determined traitors who were unhappy with their situation?
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/18/2018 14:22:27


OnlyThePie
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So that makes all traitors okay? I guess Robert Hanssen is a really cool guy? Julius and Ethel Rosenberg? Benedict Arnold? They're cool, right?

Oh, wait, they all either died or went to prison, and nobody likes them very much. You all have chosen the LEAST American part of your history, all of four and a half years, and decided THAT's your true heritage. You're allowed to wave it, but I'm just going to assume you're a nationalist, separatist asshole and/or idiot
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/18/2018 16:27:01


Clint Eastwood
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You all have chosen the LEAST American part of your history, all of four and a half years, and decided THAT's your true heritage.


Yeah. That's because people have always shit on Southerners ever since Southerners have existed. No one has ever liked us. The Civil War was when we finally stood up for ourselves. Success or not, of course we're gonna reminisce on it.

Besides, as backwards as it may seem, some of the most patriotic people are in the South. We love this country--it's just that we would love it more if we were separate. We think this is the greatest country on planet earth, but that doesn't mean we can't do better. That's why a lot of people fly the Confederate flag and the American flag--to pay respect to the country they live in, and the one they hope to someday live in.

I understand how you could think I'm an idiot or an asshole for waving a flag like that, but I'm not the one that chose it as our symbol, and unless you grew up in the South--and I don't mean Houston or Miami, I mean the backcountry, where you'll actually find genuine Southerners, not discount New Yorkers--you couldn't understand both the sentimental and traditional value of the Confederate flag. Even if you did grow up in the South, you don't have to wave it or even take pride in it; but surely you can understand what it means, at least.

And no, it doesn't make all traitors okay. But it doesn't make them all bad, either. Instead of saying "all traitors are good or bad," we should look at the cause they're betraying, and their motives for betraying it. Like Snowden--he's a traitor against the US. But was it for a good reason? I believe so.

The motives behind the Confederacy's betrayal are controversial at best, and I'm sure there were a few higher-ups who wanted to betray the US for less than honorable reasons. But as a whole, I don't believe the South would have sent 750,000+ men to war just to preserve slavery. You must remember, the victory writes the history books, and claiming that the Confederacy seceded to preserve slavery was a surefire way for the Union to make sure people kept hating the South. Not saying that's for sure what happened--but can you really say that's not what happened?

Anyway, that's entirely off subject now; point is, the Confederate flag represents Southern pride, not "Damn I wish blacks were enslaved again."

Edited 3/18/2018 16:28:43
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/18/2018 18:14:20


Wulfhere
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Why pick a flag from a controversial period of rebellion against the government (which some would even argue as betraying the nation even though nations and states are not the same thing)?

It's a valid question.

You have to consider what goes into a symbol that makes it worthy of its status. How the outsider - the person to whom this symbol means nothing - receives it, is more than irrelevant. A great symbol spites the enemy, for its primary aesthetic function is distinction. Relevant to the symbol is also the sum total of all the greatness that made it exceptional throughout history. Men died for that flag, and they were survived by their friends and families who remembered it. Why replace something people literally died for with something sterile, normal, unoffensive, etc.?

The very fact that people are offended by this flag stamps it with nobility. Those who fly it are set apart from those who tear it down.
Debate: The Confederate Flag: 3/18/2018 18:27:44


Wulfhere
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Opponents of the flag are not concerned with patriotism or national loyalty. The people who want the flag taken down are the same people who unironically believe "when Fascism comes to the US it will be draped in the American flag". They don't like flags or anything that distinguishes between different people. They hate collective histories and symbols because they are immersive reminders to the different cultures that the progressive dream of a completely mixed, culture-less, consumerist human population is a pipe dream or a dystopian nightmare.

What the Confederate flag represents to the Progressives is a group of unapologetic, living, breathing White people who refuse to give up their identity and participate in the new global society. To the Progressives this is a crime worse than slavery and separatism.
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