Here’s a sure fire way to announce to the world just how irrelevant you are. More to the point, the SCV would have us believe that this is nothing more than an attempt to honor the men who carried this flag into battle, but anyone with an undergraduate degree in child psychology can see that this is a classic example of children who are desperate to be seen and acknowledged. The best part of this ceremony, however, is the inclusion of everyone’s favorite black Confederate, H.K. Edgerton. He is in classic form:
This place should be full of black folks. I don’t know why [I’m the only one here]. Maybe your newspaper should have told them to come to celebrate and sing Dixie and salute our flag. It’s a shame white folks and black folks make people think this is an evil flag. This is a southern flag. You can’t attack this flag and call yourself a southerner. You can call yourself a traitor….I represent four and a half million black folks who’ve been beat down and would love to be here, too. If they tell you they wouldn’t be, the first thing you ask is where they’re from. Then you tell them to go on back.
Tracking Civil War memory can at times be downright fun. Way to go boys.
If the SCV were really interested in ensuring that the flag is interpreted “properly” they would retire it and push for its display only in museums where it can be given the kind of attention it deserves. As always my thinking on this issue has been influenced by John Coski’s The Confederate Battle Flag: America’s Most Embattled Emblem (Harvard University Press, 2006).