Terry McAuliffe, the Governor of the State of Virginia made a bold move on Tuesday by requesting the swift removal of Confederate flags from specialty state license plates, sparking a new debate over what exactly that banner means in the eyes of the citizens. Many who hold fast to the belief that it is merely a symbol of heritage of a bygone generation of soldiers who fought in the civil war would have many to believe that this alone should be celebrated, ignoring the blemish on America of a time when it was believed that people should have the right to own other people and treat them not merely as property, but as animals.
I’m not against people honoring their heritage, but there comes a time when a people must resolve to choose a new symbol for which is a better representation of that heritage, that at the same tie does not offend others for whom the previous symbol was a sign of bigotry, hatred, and abuse of the liberty this country was founded upon.
The Confederate Flag is to the South much like a family crest is to a knight of the round table, so I get the emotional tie that might be felt for many who fail to see the struggle it poses to the rest of the nation. However, it is also much like a brand or mission statement for a major corporation that no longer fits in with the times. It is for this reason that the call for a change is now, more than ever warranted. How often do family crests change over the years, simply because something within the image no longer represents what the family stands for or desire to be remembered as?
While many will tout the notion that they themselves are not racist and that they feel that the flag does not represent slavery today, the simple fact remains that millions of people (including descendants of slave owners) do. There have to be other images that can sufficiently represent the Confederacy and honor the memory that is said to be good about it which would not hold the same disdain in eyes of the public. In a season in America today, is not now the time to show a sign of good faith in healing the divide of this nation’s ailing race relations than by taking a real look at this one thing that has become a thorn in the side of many fellow Americans?
Whether or not this call to action by Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe is followed through on by the legislative branch of the Virginian Commonwealth or not, it is proving to be something that reflects the “New Virginia Economy” that many would like to see happen sooner rather than later.
QUESTION: Do you agree that the Virginia Governor is on the right path to a “New Virginia Economy”? Continue the discussion here and at #NewVirginiaEconomy
- Virginia governor wants Confederate flag off license plates (witn.com)
- Gov. McAuliffe orders Confederate flag be removed from Virginia license plates (wdbj7.com)
- #BREAKING: Amazon to Pull Confederate Flag Merchandise (hinterlandgazette.com)
- ‘It’s always going to be a slap in the face’: Confederate flag at center of growing political storm (rawstory.com)
- #TakeItDown: Why the Confederate flag must go (msnbc.com)