A number of you emailed me a story that appeared in The New York Times about the supposed resurgence of the Confederate battle flag during the 2016 election. It is certainly an attractive narrative for those unfamiliar with its recent history.
There is nothing necessarily wrong with the story. It includes plenty of examples of recent battle flag sightings around the country, interviews with flag supporters and detractors, and the obligatory interview with an academic historian. All good so far. Continue reading
This image appears in a new book about Forsyth County’s history and its struggle to remain an overwhelmingly white community through the 1990s. I have not read it, but plan on doing so very soon. It’s the image and its timing that strikes me as significant.
Taken in 1987 it connects the battle flag’s history as a potent symbol of “massive resistance” during the civil rights era with its increasing visibility in recent years, including its presence at Donald Trump rallies.
As I have stated before in connection with so many other incidents, it is no accident that this group embraced the battle flag as its symbol of resistance in the 1980s. They embraced a symbol whose connection to the preservation of white supremacy extended back to 1861. No other symbol can convey such a powerful and unmistakable message.
I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised that the Virginia Flaggers would not be pleased with my recent piece in The Daily Beast. They huffed and puffed on their Facebook page and blog, but failed to use the opportunity to do some serious soul searching. 🙂
Susan Hathaway accused me of engaging “in old, tired ‘7 degrees of separation’ theories to try and link us (and me, especially) to anyone and anything they think will FINALLY turn the public against us. Every example, including the owners of the property on which two of their flags fly, is linked directly to Hathaway and the Flaggers. Their association is based on a decision to partner and be seen publicly.[fn id=”1″] Continue reading
Five years later and the Confederate Memorial Chapel – where it all started – is still without a battle flag. In fact, we can go down a list that includes protests against the Museum of the Confederacy at Appomattox, Washington & Lee University, the Virginia Sesquicentennial Commission as well as the cities of Lexington, Danville, Charlottesville and Alexandria and not find a single victory. Continue reading
It’s nice to see that Robert Moore has had some time to publish a few blog posts in the midst of his pursuit of an advanced degree in digital history. As always, he is thoughtful and offers an important perspective that is worth considering. Yesterday he offered a few words about Kevin Collier, who refuses to turn in his SCV vanity plate in Virginia. You may remember that Virginia discontinued this particular plate a few years ago owing to the display of the SCV’s logo, which includes a Confederate battle flag. Continue reading
Earlier today a Federal judge dismissed a lawsuit that sought to have the Confederate battle emblem on the Mississippi flag declared an unconstitutional relic of slavery. According to U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves the plaintiff was unable to show that the flag had caused a “cognizable legal injury.” The Confederate Heritage folks will certainly applaud the decision, but they probably shouldn’t get too excited about the outcome. Continue reading
Update: Mississippi University for Women also announced earlier today that it will no longer fly the state flag on campus. That leaves Delta State University as the last school standing.
Up until this morning MSU was the
only state university that still flew the state flag on campus. Pressure on other campuses and in municipalities across the state has led to its removal owing to its inclusion of the Confederate battle flag in its design.
The university released the following statement announcing the decision earlier today: Continue reading
I couldn’t agree more. You can start here.