The Power of Representation

The red field represents the Blood of Christ.

The white border represents the Protection of God.

The blue “X” represents the Christian Cross of Saint Andrew, the first Disciple of Christ Jesus and Patron Saint of Scotland.

The 13 stars represent the 13 Southern states of Secession.

Thus, the message in the Confederate Battle Flag is:

“Through the Blood of Christ,

with the Protection of God,

We, the Thirteen States,

Are united in our Christian fight for liberty.

This was obviously an explanation of the flags meaning by someone who believes that the flag means no harm. However, the ways in which the ways the flag has been used in recent history has spread great deals of controversy in America. The flag no longer has a “positive” connotation, but an evident negative one instead.

In a recent event in Charlottesville, Virginia many white men and women gathered to make a point to the people of the United States of America. They claimed that “diversity” equaled white genocide and that their “white” heritage was in danger of becoming extinct. They chanted slogans like “all lives matter!” to fight against the Black Lives Matter movement. They also intentionally invoked fear in those who they came across. They claimed they were being treated unfairly in society, but we know all too well that that is not the case. One white man in this country is more privileged than all the black men in this country combined. In an article from The Guardian, they stated that: “Black males aged 15-34 were nine times more likely than other Americans to be killed by law enforcement officers last year, according to data collected for The Counted, an effort by the Guardian to record every such death. They were also killed at four times the rate of young white men”. This data is important because it emphasizes the point that black lives don’t matter that much as white lives in this country. White people’s history has been plastered all around us since the very beginning. Their accomplishments are featured in almost every museum and history book you can find. For example, the Declaration of Independence was signed by all white men, some of whom owned their own slaves. Why are their accomplishments praised when the virtues this country is supposed to stand on doesn’t include minorities, specifically black people. These accomplishments have been plastered so much so the black community felt the need to create things like the BET network and Black History Month so they can receive gratification and praise in the country that seems ultimately against them. To add to that, the whole basis of this entire country even being created was white men enslaving and taking the land of a minority group of people. So, how could their heritage possibly be at risk when they practically ripped apart someone else’s?

While history has been unkind to African-Americans, Hispanic Americans, and even the natives of this country, many of the white men in Charlottesville paraded around waving the Confederate flag. They claimed that the flag was a major symbol of their history and taking down things like their statues, of their slave-owning leaders like George Washington and Thomas Jefferson was wrong and unfair. This representation of the flag does not give a great impression. When people see that flag they see hatred and violence. That is why they wave the flag at these events – they know it brings along fear. During the event, a team of reporters interviewed some of the white supremacists marching through the town. They made remarks like, “We aren’t peaceful! We will kill these people if we have to” when asked if they came for a peaceful protest. They exclaimed cruel joy when Hannah Graham was murdered by a supposed white supremacist because she was a counter-protester and did not agree with their beliefs. They caused havoc and chaos throughout the entire city and thrived on their accomplishments. While ravaging they swung their confederate flags and Hitler signs, as a way to make an obvious statement about the feelings they had towards people who were not white.

Even the president of the United States seems to have chosen a side in the argument as well. The long-awaited statement he makes to the public and social media was not exactly the claim we were hoping for. He goes to say:

“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence on many sides, on many sides,” Trump said during a short statement from his private golf club in New Jersey. ”

The fact that he doesn’t specifically call out the white supremacists for the damage that they did shows us whose side he’s really on. It seems as though he’d rather beat around the bush then call out the real problem in this country. Doesn’t seem like he’s actually Making America Great Again to me.

Take a look at this photo:

As stated before the argued meaning of the flag is from a very religious standpoint. The KKK is very famously known for being a hate group that has lynched many black people for decades just for the color of their skin. Does that truly represent Christian values of being a man for others? Does that truly correspond with God’s word to love thy neighbor? I think we all know the answer to that, which is no, not at all. So how can these White Supremacists not see the problem with this flag? If this flag is meant to be peaceful, why is it used in so many hateful instances?

The Confederate flag has been a very controversial symbol for decades. To simply state that it’s just a part of history cannot explain away what it has grown to represent. Now many make the claim, “Well the United States flag has negative history behind it, what about that?”. The answer to that is, we make change one step at a time. Here is the initial meaning of the colors in the flag of the United States of America:

The colors of the pales (the vertical stripes) are those used in the flag of the United States of America; White signifies purity and innocence, Red – hardiness and valor, and Blue, the color of the Chief (the broad band above the stripes) signifies vigilance, perseverance & justice.

Does this explanation seem accurate to the state of the country currently? Not so much, which means we first have to tackle our problems internally. We have to get rid of these hate groups, like the KKK and neo-Nazi’s, in order to become a more positive country. The United States flag is supposed to symbolize freedom and justice for all people, but if these hate groups still exist then that flag is inaccurate. The equality in this country does not exist for everyone, and these hateful white supremacists are not the ones suffering from that. We, as a country, need to fix our problems on the inside – and that starts by making sure events like the one in Charlottesville never happen again.

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