Today I heard an interview on NPR of South Carolina Representative Doug Brannon. You can read it and also listen to it here. I strongly encourage everyone to listen to the interview. He speaks about his efforts to remove the Confederate flag from the capital dome of South Carolina before the recent murders. Most important, he was a friend of Reverend Clemente Pinckney, who he described as follows:
"He was huge. He was - I'm a short guy. I'm 5-foot-7, and Senator Pinckney was 6'5 or 6'6. I mean, he was a mountain of a man. But when he walked into a room, the smile just lit the room up. It - you know, as big as he was, he always - he was so inviting. He never felt ominous. It was - he was just a welcome sight. And if you've ever imagined what God's voice sounded like, Clemente's voice was that. His voice could shake the room."
Furthermore, Rep. Brannon notes that the Confederate flag was not placed on the South Carolina capital dome until 1962 in response to segregation. He said, "We're talking about a flag that got placed on the capital dome by a bunch of white guys who were mad about desegregation."
This is further evidence that the Confederate flag is about segregation, and ultimately hatred of our neighbors and fellow citizens. If a White person has a close friend or relative who is African-American, there is no way that person could look at the Confederate flag with pride and be consistent with their commitment to the well-being of those friends and family members.
The flag cannot be about Southern pride when the South is made up of African-Americans, Hispanic American, Asian Americans, Native Americans, and White Americans. The flag is the pride only of a select group of White people.