There are many Americans in this day and age that have no clue about history, nor do they understand the realities that have shaped American history.
Some of these individuals, even as the Confederate flag was being removed from the South Carolina Statehouse grounds, do not recognize that the African-American community and other communities of color view the Confederate Flag as a racist symbol that has historically been used to promote hate.
On Friday, Roland Martin, Activist/Filmmaker Bree Newsome, and the NewsOne Now panel featuring Catalina Byrd, Media Consultant & Host, WEAA 88.9FM Baltimore, Dr. Wilmer Leon, Political Scientist/Syndicated Columnist, SiriusXM Radio, and Daniella Gibbs Léger, Senior VP, Communications & Strategy, Center For American Progress, discussed the history of the Confederacy, the Confederate flag, and America’s denial of the history of hate associated with it.
Bree Newsome told Martin that one of the most disturbing things she has witnessed over the last few weeks, “is the extent to which Americans are really not educated on history.”
She added, “I think we really need to take a look at what is being taught in schools.” Newsome explained that people still do not understand what the Civil War was fought for, they do not understand the Civil Rights movement, and have “no understanding “ that historically, the Confederate flag was used to “terrorize people” since the end of the Civil War.
Daniella Gibbs Léger said the history of the Confederate flag is one of “racism, oppression, and hate.” She added, “To try to separate those two things is ridiculous.”
Martin, host of NewsOne Now, quoted the creator of the Confederate flag, William Thompson, and his description of “the White man’s flag,” which states:
“As a people we are fighting to maintain the heaven ordained supremacy of the White man over the inferior or colored race. A white flag would thus be emblematical of our cause.”
Dr. Wilmer Leon reminded NewsOne Now viewers that South Carolina was the first state to secede from the Union. He said, “All you need to do is read the document of secession that South Carolina passed in 1852 that said, ‘We are doing this because of the fugitive slave provision in the Northern states that will not return our runaway slaves.’”
Newsome, who was arrested for scaling the flagpole at the South Carolina Statehouse grounds last weekend, cited members of the GOP for using America’s denial, or lack of knowledge of the history of the Confederacy, saying,“The thing about what Republicans are doing that is so dangerous is they are clearly playing to and courting an element of society that is virulently racist, that is violent.”
Watch Roland Martin, Bree Newsome, and the NewsOne Now panel discuss the denial of the history associated with the Confederacy, Confederate flag, and racism in the video clip above.
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