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Janelle2002

A Georgetown law professor just perfectly captured the absurdity of Confederate pride

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A sign equates the confederate flag with the nazi flag as people attend a protest in support of a confederate flags removal from the South Carolina capitol grounds.

It's been 150 years since the Civil War officially ended, but take a trip to certain regions in the south and you might get a different impression.

Especially in the wake of last week's shooting in South Carolina, the Confederate battle flag has become an iconic and often unwelcome reminder that race relations in the US still face a staggering uphill battle.

But some people still wave the flag with pride, and Georgetown University law professor Paul Butler has some words for those people.

On a Monday episode of "The Diane Rehm Show," a caller said that her Confederate ancestors deserve respect, even though the Confederate flag represents "racial hatred."

To which Butler replied:

"I have no respect for your ancestors. As far as your ancestors are concerned, I shouldn't be a law professor at Georgetown. I should be a slave. That's why they fought that war. I don't understand what it means to be proud of a legacy of terrorism and violence.

Last week at this time, I was in Israel. The idea that a German would say, you know, that thing we did called the Holocaust, that was wrong, but I respect the courage of my Nazi ancestors. That wouldn't happen.

The reason people can say what you said in the United States, is because, again, black life just doesn't matter to a lot of people."

Butler isn't alone in that bleak assessment.

Just ask the students at the University of Texas, who recently spray-painted "Black Lives Matter" on a Confederate statue.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/georgetown-law-professor-just-perfectly-223100907.html

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“Hate is too great a burden to bear. It injures the hater more than it injures the hated.” – Coretta Scott King

"Oppressive language does more than represent violence; it is violence; does more than represent the limits of knowledge; it limits knowledge." -Toni Morrison

He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Reality is that at some level we all know that what he is saying is obvious. We also need to realize however, that many of those who consider the confederate flag a sign of heritage still abide to its ideals at some level, of a society where blacks and jews are deemed lesser than the white man. It's not about heritage. It's about feeling secure in their hatred and bigotry.


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Reality is that at some level we all know that what he is saying is obvious. We also need to realize however, that many of those who consider the confederate flag a sign of heritage still abide to its ideals at some level, of a society where blacks and jews are deemed lesser than the white man. It's not about heritage. It's about feeling secure in their hatred and bigotry.

Jon Stewart has been killing it as of late when it comes to this. History wasn't my strong point, but it's a shame that in SC there are so many idols and shrines to that time period of racism and slavery.


“Hate is too great a burden to bear. It injures the hater more than it injures the hated.” – Coretta Scott King

"Oppressive language does more than represent violence; it is violence; does more than represent the limits of knowledge; it limits knowledge." -Toni Morrison

He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

President-Obama-jpg.jpg

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I agree that the flag represents a racist past and shouldn't be on government buildings etc.

I do think that you can not paint everyone that has the flag as a racist though. There are a group of people out there that see it like the Texas or California flag in terms of a separate identity to the US.

Edited by Sousuke

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I agree that the flag represents a racist past and shouldn't be on government buildings etc.

I do think that you can not paint everyone that has the flag as a racist though. There are a group of people out there that see it like the Texas or California flag in terms of a separate identity to the US.

No one is painting everyone with the flag as a racist. The flag does need to go. It symbolizes a part of America that should no longer exist.

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No one is painting everyone with the flag as a racist. The flag does need to go. It symbolizes a part of America that should no longer exist.

I think today was the tipping point for me where it went from logical debate about its use to sort of witch hunt-like. It doesn't need to go everywhere.

Edited by Sousuke

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The laughable, and yet expected irony in all this is that the same contingent that supports flying the confederate flag on government grounds are those who oppose flying the Mexican flag in Texas on private property. Their logic, if they were capable of such enterprise, should dictate that the Mexican flag should fly alongside the confederate flag in every government property in TX. After all, there was a war, Mexico lost, but their heritage should be honored and celebrated by all.

There isn't a facepalm big enough to do these folks justice.

Jon Stewart has been killing it as of late when it comes to this. History wasn't my strong point, but it's a shame that in SC there are so many idols and shrines to that time period of racism and slavery.

Edited by JohnR!

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The laughable, and yet expected irony in all this is that the same contingent that supports flying the confederate flag on government grounds are those who oppose flying the Mexican flag in Texas on private property. Their logic, if they were capable of such enterprise, should dictate that the Mexican flag should fly alongside the confederate flag in every government property in TX. After all, there was a war, Mexico lost, but their heritage should be honored and celebrated by all.

There isn't a facepalm big enough to do these folks justice.

I'm surprised you couldn't see it from your high horse but every government property in TX that has the confederate flag also has the mexican flag. And a spanish, texas, france and us flag. It's called "six flags over texas".

Sousuke is right. People that wear confederate battle flags around are just proud racists. But removing flags from places where there is meaningful context (the flag in the SC capitol is a memorial flag for the soldiers that died in the confederacy) is whitewashing history.


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I'm surprised you couldn't see it from your high horse but every government property in TX that has the confederate flag also has the mexican flag. And a spanish, texas, france and us flag. It's called "six flags over texas".

Sousuke is right. People that wear confederate battle flags around are just proud racists. But removing flags from places where there is meaningful context (the flag in the SC capitol is a memorial flag for the soldiers that died in the confederacy) is whitewashing history.

So there could be places where Nazi flags should be flown in Germany to honor the fallen Wehrmacht soldiers?

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Germans prefer to use the Iron Cross because that was their battle insignia. And that's what you'll find in memorials. But you'll also see in some places the eagle sitting in the swastika, though Germans find that too unsettling and removed most. I personally find the denazification laws in Germany whitewashing. You shouldn't pretend the past didn't happen. You should keep it in your books and in your buildings as a memory of all that happen, good and bad.

This is a highly pertinent question, actually. Right after the civil war, the confederate memorials used the _battle flag_ of the confederacy (the one that's famous) and not the the national flag of the confederacy because it's how you normally honor your dead. During the civil rights era, Southern Democrats appropriated that flag as a symbol of the old south in their efforts to keep their "separate but equal" policies that were being challenged.


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