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"Flying the Confederate Battle Flag in the North is a..." Topic

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Tango0104 Aug 2022 8:40 p.m. PST

… Special Sort of Disgrace

"New York is not a place where confederate battle flags should be flying. And yet there are more here now than ever before. I saw dozens of them while driving on country roads through upstate counties this year. They fly from private homes, mainly in rural areas, and I even saw one hanging from a run-down house in the middle of my hometown of Oneida, just around the corner from the Post Office.

Upstate New York State was once the most pro-Lincoln and anti-slavery part of the Union. Rebel flags fly on the same streets and rural roads from which men left their families to fight and die in the Civil War. The flag is not only an indecent symbol. In New York, it's an assault on history and a sign of disrespect to our forefathers. Those who fly it are seeking attention. But ignoring it is also a dishonor.

Why might people think that flying the confederate battle flag is acceptable? Some may be fully aware of its racist associations and agree with that. I suspect more of those who began flying it recently see it as a symbol of rebellion against a tyrannical government, something like the ‘Don't Tread on Me' flags borrowed from the American Revolution (which are also more prominent now than ever). The use of the flag in the Dukes of Hazzard and by Lynyrd Skynyrd in the 70s and 80s might have made flying the flag seem mildly unruly but in a way that dissociated it from being a hate symbol. Then, it came across as an almost tongue-in-cheek symbol of hillbilly fun rather than anything inherently evil. But those days are gone and now no one can or should see it in that way…"

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Dn Jackson Supporting Member of TMP04 Aug 2022 8:53 p.m. PST

My generation of Southerners, as a general rule, rejected the racist overtones of those who flew the flag in the 50s and 60s. We looked on it as a response to an overbearing federal government, a rejection of conformity, and with some pride from being Southerners. It is a modern thing, pushed for political purposes, to associate it with slavery and racism again.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP04 Aug 2022 9:28 p.m. PST

Yes Dn, I think that it is a modern thing. And I think upstate New Yorkers flying it just want to identify with the political right. It is not a racially diverse area in general. It's rural, not much I common with NYC. Moderate income, identifies with red states. They are free to choose, but they will be judged by many. It's still the North.

35thOVI Supporting Member of TMP05 Aug 2022 3:50 a.m. PST

For years around here, all it represented was a NASCAR fan. Normally about the same age as those who watched "The Dukes of Hazzard" as kids. Never liked auto racing or that show. Maybe in New York it means something else. Possibly they are Confederate reenactors. Maybe he should try going up and have a nice conversation with them and ask their reasons.

Mr Elmo05 Aug 2022 3:52 a.m. PST

I usually assume the tattooed and toothless with have a battle flag handy.

Dn Jackson Supporting Member of TMP05 Aug 2022 3:59 a.m. PST

Substitute any other group with a comment like the above and you'd be verbally assaulted as a racist.

35thOVI Supporting Member of TMP05 Aug 2022 4:05 a.m. PST

Ok after writing that, I read the article.

" The people flying these flags in New York are a small but noticeable minority who are forcing their views on many people who are disgusted by them. Whether we should ban the flying of the flag or not is an interesting question. If we do, some argue, it will further substantiate the claims of those why currently fly them – that they are living under an increasingly tyrannical, controlling government. It would be far better if they became more aware of why it is objectionable and chose to pack them away themselves. It is deeply disrespectful to people whose ancestors lived in the system of slavery and white supremacy for which that flag stands. But it is also a sign of disrespect for the people who sacrificed their lives in the Civil War"

How are they "forcing their views"? Does he not understand that, that same argument can be equally used for those who fly any flag that another group might find offensive. A Rainbow flag, a ANTIFA flag, BLM flag, pro Abortion flag, this list could become endless. Is it only the flags that offend one sides sensibilities that matter. Only their social and political views are the "correct" views?

Again this all seems extremely silly to me. Still think he should try sitting down in their front yard and have a nice friendly conversation with them. Isn't friendly dialogue supposed to be the way we are supposed to try and settle these things. Each side express their views in an open forum? You know, Just like on College campuses when perceived "right wing" speakers come to talk.

Bill N05 Aug 2022 4:44 a.m. PST

I grew up in the South. During the early 80s I visited upstate New York a few times. The first time I did I walked into my host's dining room and saw a print of the iconic painting of Lee and Jackson at Chancellorsville. My hosts had never lived in the South. Driving around the area I noticed the odd Confederate flag flying from homes. Also saw it on the occasional boat on the lakes.

Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian05 Aug 2022 5:14 a.m. PST

I live in upstate New York, and do see the Confederate flag from time to time on vehicles. Can't speak to who they are or why they fly it. Haven't noticed any increased usage.

Murvihill05 Aug 2022 5:41 a.m. PST

I suspect these flags are flown more in rejection of the New- York-City-dominated state government than love of slavery.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP05 Aug 2022 6:03 a.m. PST

Yes Murvihill, that divide exists. I do not see any change in the number of flags either, can go for days without seeing one, although I do not get to the far western part of the state too much.

I don't really think much about them when I see them either. But seeing it in the Capitol was different.

Au pas de Charge Supporting Member of TMP05 Aug 2022 9:34 a.m. PST

You can do what you like on private property but dont be surprised when you elicit a negative reaction.

A Rainbow flag, a ANTIFA flag, BLM flag, pro Abortion flag, this list could become endless. Is it only the flags that offend one sides sensibilities that matter.

Is this being done? I'd like to see where lots of ANTIFA flags are being flown on houses.

Again this all seems extremely silly to me. Still think he should try sitting down in their front yard and have a nice friendly conversation with them.

I dont know about this. I suspect the people flying Southern Cross battle flags would get defensive along the lines that if you dont get it, you must be with the other side.

You know, Just like on College campuses when perceived "right wing" speakers come to talk.

Although I mostly disagree with blocking right wing speakers from colleges, if it's a private college, then the speakers are out of luck just like, if it's your house, you can fly whatever flag you like.

But, your wry spin underlines what I said above, that these symbols are used to annouce solidarity with the faithful and get in the faces of the opposition. Thus, I doubt a chat concerning the reasons for flying the southern cross would be fruitful.

Context matters but it matters as much for the the viewer as the utterer.

I don't really think much about them when I see them either. But seeing it in the Capitol was different.

They paid a hefty price for their speech:


Stryderg05 Aug 2022 10:21 a.m. PST

I doubt a chat concerning the reasons for flying the southern cross would be fruitful.

Maybe, but it might also provide a context for the flag instead of the OP making one up.

Col Durnford05 Aug 2022 11:22 a.m. PST

I would love to see a house flying an Antifa flag. You could do anything you wanted to to them and who would they call?

Kinda like the BLM leader who had her car stolen while she was attending a "I hate the cops" rally.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP05 Aug 2022 3:11 p.m. PST

I have never once seen an Antifa flag. They are total anarchists, Very decentralized. Cops generally do not care what kind of flag you have. They do their jobs. Maybe a few who don't, but not many. Like the military, they may have a variety of private views, but they do their duty.

35thOVI Supporting Member of TMP05 Aug 2022 3:29 p.m. PST

Tort, you have never seen their flag, or just no one flying them at a home? There was a teacher that bragged about having one in his classroom, and showed it. I "think" he finally lost his job. But I have never seen one in front of a house.

I think you realize I just came up with possible examples of flags that might make others feel like the people flying them "were forcing their views" on them. I did not "specifically" say I have seen them flying in front of houses. I don't even know if there is such a thing as a pro abortion flag. Seen quite a few pro abortion signs in yards, but no flags. But I was making a point. What you might find offensive, others don't and of course Vaisa versa. But I am sure you understand that.

Col Durnford05 Aug 2022 3:42 p.m. PST

My point is not that the police would not respond (they will), it's more a case of the people who openly hate all cops may be conflicted when they need to call them.

Au pas de Charge Supporting Member of TMP05 Aug 2022 6:51 p.m. PST

My point is not that the police would not respond (they will), it's more a case of the people who openly hate all cops may be conflicted when they need to call them.

Is it fair to assert that ANTIFA flag owners hate all cops but unfair to impute motives to Confederate flag wavers? And, additionally, that we need to reach out to them with open minds to understand what they're feeling because what the Southern Cross flag represents is unclear?

Grattan54 Supporting Member of TMP05 Aug 2022 8:02 p.m. PST

Confederate flag has always been pretty clear to me. Destroy the Union and retain slavery as an institution.

Thresher0105 Aug 2022 8:07 p.m. PST

Well said, Dn Jackson.

There seem to be a lot of very small, radical groups pushing their fringe views on others today – there's a virtual explosion of this in our society now.

Well, to be fair, Antifa members were at the center of the 574 riots that occurred in 2020, prior to the Presidential election, and they were throwing molotov cocktails, rocks, and bottles at law enforcement personnel, and trying to burn down courthouses, police stations, and numerous businesses.

Some law enforcement personnel and innocent civilians died during those riots, and over 2,000 of them were injured, AND the economic damage from said riots topped $2 USD BILLION dollars, so yes, I suspect it is possible to presume that most, if not all Antifa flag owners hate cops and want to defund them.

How many Antifa flag owners do you know that love cops and openly support them?

Stryderg05 Aug 2022 8:08 p.m. PST

If someone thinks the only thing the Southern Cross flag represents is a love of slavery, or that the only thing the ANTIFA flag represents hatred of all law enforcement, then, yes, I would say it's unclear to that someone. So an open minded discussion might be called for.

Thresher0105 Aug 2022 8:18 p.m. PST

Actually, the Confederate flag represents the desire for freedom from an overbearing government people disagree with, just as our forefathers did when we declared independence from British rule.

One action is lauded by many, and the other is not, surprisingly. Some/many don't support "self-determination" and freedom of choice in this case, but do in others, like abortion, which is extremely hypocritical.

The "Don't Tread on Me" flag is similar too, and now under attack by the left as well, who don't like what it stands for and ARE openly trying to stifle free speech and expression of dissenting views.

Even the Betsy Ross flag, which is pretty innocuous, is now under attack from the left.

I will remind our readers that it was Southern Democrats who supported slavery and were against reforms to stop slavery and racism back in the day, even up to the 1960s/1970s, and beyond, despite numerous attempts to cover that up, or blame others for their misdeeds.

The ties of certain political candidates in power, or who ran for office to them, and/or former members of the KKK is very interesting too (sorry, can't identify them for fear of being censored/doghoused – imposing the TMP 10 year rule here, but anyone with a modicum of historical knowledge should be able to figure out which male and female Presidential candidates I'm talking about).

Look up Exalted Cyclops and Robert Byrd if you are unfamiliar.

Personal logo Silurian Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 7:58 a.m. PST

Yes, the Democrats and Republicans effectively switched platforms over a hundred years ago.

Grattan54 Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 10:07 a.m. PST


Exactly what was the federal government doing that was sooo oppressive to the South that they had to secede other than the North's opposition to slavery?

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 11:02 a.m. PST

Nope, 35th had not seen one, had to look it up. I am not really offended by it, its kind of meaningless looking. Like Antifa itself. I guess not much happens around where I live.

And just to be really fair, departments and the feds pretty much found that the 2020 rioters were mostly opportunists and your average criminals, not Antifa, except in Portland. This goes along with much of our previous experiences with things like fires and looting following protests. It brings out bad guys looking to score. I did not ask about BLM.

Generally calling people on the left a bunch of snowflake type names and then expecting others to buy that the same people are violent rioters leaves me wondering more about the right. But breaking the law is what it is and our justice system is not working very well these last few years.

Personal logo Silurian Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 11:37 a.m. PST

Not to mention people like 'umbrella man'…

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 11:39 a.m. PST

Col.I was not sure what you meant, apologies. Antifa people really don't like anyone, and yes they might feel sheepish calling a cop if they need one.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 11:49 a.m. PST

Yes, Silurian, umbrella man, ironic bearer of a "false flag"! But it was still mostly thugs.

35thOVI Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 12:26 p.m. PST

Tort, as you know, there are bad people on both sides. Racists come in every color, sex and political party. People waving Confederate flags offend one side. People kneeling during the National anthem or waving Antifa flags and wearing masks offend the other. There is also violence from both sides.

But I don't feel like anyone flying a specific flag or with a specific sign in their yard, is forcing their views down my throat, as this writer seems to feel. I am not that insecure in my own beliefs. I feel sorry for those who are. I might not agree with their views, but it is a free country, or is at least is for now.

As far as the Confederate flag flying at a house. I have seen a few in my time. One had a NASCAR flag, his favorite driver and a Confederate flag below that, so pretty sure that is NASCAR related. A couple of Confederate reenactors I used to know flew one, but theirs had to do with heritage and relatives in the Confederacy and they all had US flags flying higher and both served in Vietnam. I have seen a few, very few recently and I can count those on one hand, that had a confederate flag and a "Let's go Brandon" flag hanging from a banister on their house. We can assume that is a anti current government opinion.

So all in all, in the great scheme of problems facing this country, this falls in my .00001 percent range.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 2:30 p.m. PST

Yes 35th, you are right on the money.!

35thOVI Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 2:54 p.m. PST

I knew we would agree on this. 🙂

Au pas de Charge Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 3:33 p.m. PST

I had a swimsuit model gf from Tennessee and I bought her a southern cross bikini. It was my idea not hers. She didn't ask for it but she wore it. Neither of us thought anything of it. Looking back, I must've been out of my mind. On a Southern white, the symbol can take on several contexts. Not sure about for Northerners. Certainly, I would never wear one on a tshirt or as a decal.

In the North, these confederate symbols are seen as hateful. In NY, this is an interesting case and law.


Rusty Balls06 Aug 2022 5:34 p.m. PST

I live in upstate NY. I have not seen a change in the number of Confederate battle flags in any way over the last couple of years. More manufactured journalism to further divide us. Frankly many people feel the government is overreaching it's powers.

It's like the recent Abortion decision. The SCOTUS decision simply returns the decision making power back to the States and the people that reside in them to make their own laws. The constitution does not explicitly grant a constitutional right to abortion as is claimed in the media again. It's like many issues, by design, intended to be decided by the states. I'm not certain exactly how I feel about Abortion. I am not intending to debate the merits of this issue, only the principle of local government. There is as I believe probably a sensible middle ground but we are incapable of finding it any more in this country. The plain fact is that if you don't like the laws of the State you live in leave or find a way for you not to have to interact with them. I understand that is not always easy but life never is. I plan on leaving NY for the south because I don't much care for their taxation, gun or redistribution (upstate vs NYC) laws.

To get back on topic, I cite the controversial issue above only to say that I really feel that we don't have a country anymore. I can see wanting to express that. My choice wouldn't be a confederate flag but rather something more like the Betsy Ross flag. No connotation of slavery but rather independence. If those who reportedly felt as the article explains flew that flag I believe that the media would still find a way to villify them.

It's really quite sad. Our political and media class have managed to disaggregate our country into 1000 different groups. We are not a country anymore, we are just some people sharing land that happens to be adjacent. Ask yourself – what is an "American". If your answer is everyone in 1000 different groups than ask yourself what commonality or identity is there that will hold us together, force us to find common middle ground out of respect for each other and unite us when we need it. I'm not saying that we need to all be identical in any way, just that we have to have something in common to call ourselves a county.

I am an ex-us Army Paratrooper. If Japan decided to attack California, would I rush to don my helmet and shoulder my rifle again? I don't know. And that's just plain sad.

Personal logo Silurian Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2022 9:41 p.m. PST

Yes, that really IS sad.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP07 Aug 2022 7:44 a.m. PST

Rusty, thanks for this, it very much captures my thoughts. Regarding flags, I have been feeling like Fox must have bought the colors red, white, and blue at this point. It's all you can see when you watch. But I will not join their Nation or follow any other media or political party. They are just one example of monetizing the divide they helped make.

One thing I have noticed is that I don't seem to care about traveling in the US anymore. As if I know where I'm not wanted. I never though I would spend my old age feeling like this.

At least wargaming let's me live in the past for a bit. I am working on an AI for horse and musket to play against by myself. My gaming friends have both passed. But onward, it's 1776 and George Washington has problems I can understand!

Personal logo Silurian Supporting Member of TMP07 Aug 2022 11:05 a.m. PST

It seems like there is an awful lot of negativity here.
The VAST majority of Americans, whilst obviously holding a political viewpoint, are not extremists and get along just fine with their neighbors, friends and strangers regardless of their opinions (if they even feel the need to ask).
Yes I see flags up from time to time, of one sort or another, but, hey, it's a free country and I'm not bothered by it.
Case in point – absolutely true – a good friend of mine has a hugely obnoxious flag on display (granted, in their garage – but they do make a point of leaving the garage door open just about all the time. It reads: "F… Joe Biden, and F… You if you voted for him." Lovely. ) He knows there's the possibility it might refer to me , haha, but we get along perfectly well!
So we need a little less paranoia and fear of a doomed America and a realization that this country will get along just fine.
I would be happy to travel anywhere in this country.

huron725 Supporting Member of TMP07 Aug 2022 11:56 a.m. PST

Silurian +1. Although, I am not of the same political viewpoint.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP07 Aug 2022 11:56 a.m. PST

Silurian, good thoughts and I agree with much of what you say. I am perfectly happy in my neck of the woods. I am not driving too far south with Mass.plates however. I am not saying this is right ,or that I am not slightly nuts. Maybe the media has played a role in my thinking and that's my fault. The con is on and I fall for it.

Does your friend have kids? Any kids in the neighborhood? This is one of the hard parts. He can certainly do what he wants. But then you may have to explain it to your kids or grandkids.

I think the country is much changed by all this and I hope it holds on to its essential attributes. I count my blessings, have seen many amazing things, good and bad memories. But this era is even weirder than Nixon resigning in terms of vibe.

Au pas de Charge Supporting Member of TMP07 Aug 2022 1:50 p.m. PST

At least one man approached about why he was wearing the rebel flag seems to have not wanted to fully discuss it:


Stryderg07 Aug 2022 5:44 p.m. PST

That's what I would call a @#$@ interviewer. It's not a compliment.

35thOVI Supporting Member of TMP08 Aug 2022 6:42 a.m. PST


It looks like the clip is from "The Good Liars", a prankster group. Make your own decision on the source's reliability .

"We're The Good Liars – the comedy duo of Jason Selvig and Davram Steifler. We've been pulling off high-stakes pranks on public figures for years including the former president of the United States, Donald Trump. Our antics have been featured on Rachel Maddow, CNN, ABC News, Huffington Post, Daily Mail, New York Times, The Guardian, New York Daily News and numerous other media outlets and our 2016 election film Undecided:The Movie was referred to as a "Netflix Gem" by The Wrap.

All Patreon support will go back into operating The Good Liars so we can keep coming out with new content, and also covering costs on our new election movie. Patrons will get exclusive videos and signs from The Good Liars.

Don't want to commit to paying a monthly donation? You can make a one-time donation here.

We appreciate your support and don't be shy about sending us a message. "

Part of article from From Huffington Post

"Not everyone caught what was happening in the stunt by the Good Liars, known as progressive pranksters Jason Selvig and Davram Stiefler."

Au pas de Charge Supporting Member of TMP08 Aug 2022 6:51 a.m. PST

I dont know how reliable a source has to be for it to be evident that someone wearing a rebel flag tshirt cant answer whether he is pro or anti slavery. I dont think Ive ever encountered anyone who couldn't answer that before.

Searching your last quote from the Huff post brought up this video. Kinda funny.


Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP08 Aug 2022 2:55 p.m. PST

Yes, this was pretty funny! La Pierre is an easy mark.

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