I’ve never lived in the south, and I’ve barely visited there before. Probably most of my exposure to Dixie culture has been through NASCAR. So it is something of a surprise to me to see the reaction to the tragic shootings in Charleston manifest themselves as a call to eliminate the Confederate flag.
Interestingly, the Confederate flag was never really the flag of the Confederate States of America. It started life as the battle flag for the Army of Northern Virginia. Fun fact. The version we see, shaped as a rectangle rather than the square, was the second naval jack of the confederacy.
This underscores the point that it’s not celebrating a violence-free bit of history and identity. The square battle flag was a part of two of the three national flags of the Confederacy, but it was never the whole thing. The rectangular version is really a…
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