This morning, Governor Robert Bentley quietly ordered the removal of Confederate flags from capitol grounds in Montgomery, Alabama. I am sure some people are cheering.
I am not.
My ancestors were neither slave owners nor champions of slavery. They fought to defend The South from utter destruction and to establish a new nation: The Confederate States of America. Their ideology was similar to the vaunted patriots of the American Revolution. They sought to escape excessive tariffs on exports of their goods, imposed by the federal government to fill its coffers and better position northern ports for profitable trade. They fought against overreaching and invasive authority from Washington.
They fought for freedom. They emerged wounded and defeated to endure one of the worst eras of punishment and exploitation ever visited upon a conquered enemy.
The Confederate flags are a symbol to Southerners of valor and honor, not hate. For the vast majority of us they bear no association with racism or segregation. Nor do the countless memorials to Confederate war dead that some are calling offensive and in need of removal.
If we are to find offense in the flag of every nation associated with slavery, we must abolish the display of all those on this page and more.
Dylann Storm Roof, a deranged and evil person, killed nine innocent people in Charleston, South Carolina with the purpose of igniting a race war. Are we to honor his actions by dividing over the Confederate flag?
I pray not.
Love from Delta.