By Joe Brooks
The removal of the Confederate flag from the South Carolina Capitol is a positive step against racism, despite the fact that it was removed because of public pressure and shame rather than the desire of many Southerners who still waxed nostalgic over it. It was a symbol of an ignominious period in American history. Its sight for enlightened whites and especially blacks was a reminder of a harsh period which is best forgotten. It is to be placed in a museum as an historic relic, which should have occurred when the Civil War ended.
Wishing to commemorate the Confederate flag as part of the South’s heritage boggles the mind, inasmuch as commemorations are usually reserved as remembrances of great deeds. That the flag remained as a symbol of the Confederacy for the 150 years since the Civil War strongly suggests that racism still remains alive and well. One would have thought that following the war’s end the ensuing generations of Southerners would have phased out its racist past—unfortunately, this was not to be. Segregatation and Jim Crow continued, and it took the Civil Rights Act in the 1960s to end it. The Civil Rights Act resulted in the abandonment of the Democratic South to the Republican Party, which persists to this day, another indication that despite some gains racism is still, as stated, alive and well. In this day and age, it should no longer be a topic of conversation.