Why does the Confederate Flag mean racism?

The Confederate flag had nothing to do with racism. The south was fighting for state freedoms and rights. Yes slavery was a part of it, but that's not all it was about! Now, for all the people out there who are going to refer to me as a racist, 1) my best freind in high school was black 2) I've dated several black men 3) I would vote for Condaleeza Rice as Prez any day! Only mature people's comments please (preferably black and white).


A short story for all. I worked for a little company called the Disney Catalog. A girl that I met there and became good freinds with was black. I was reading Dale Earnhardt Jrs rookie book one day. He went off on a tirade about how the flag means racism. I was furious! I asked my freind what she thought about it and she said it was racist. At that time I had a tongue ring.

Update 2:

On my tongue ring was a confederate flag. I stuck my tongue out and showed her. I said do you think I'm racist? She was in awe. Then she said well I guess not!

15 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer


    You are quite right. the Northern War of Aggression against the Southern states had little to do with slavery. It was really about preserving the states rights. Many states realized that the federal government was exceeding the powers given to it by the Constitution. They tried to resolve the situation politically, but failed. Most people don't know that the state of Maryland was going to secede with the Southern states, but President Lincoln had the entire state legislature arrested before they could take a vote. When you win the war, you get to write the history. Since the federal government wants to make sure no one ever challenges their authority again, they have gone to great lengths to encourage the negative image of the Confederate Battle Flag. There is a growing movement in the South, to restore this flag to it's position of honor and dignity. I can assure you that the people who gave their lives for the Confederacy were not fighting for the right to keep slaves. You probably already know that the large landholders in the North had as many, or more slaves than the Southerners. They had to come up with some rallying cry, and slavery was it. I find it interesting that the North had to force people to join it's army. Not the South.

    Many blacks and Cherokee Indians fought on the side of the Confederacy. You should check out the Cherokee declaration of war against the Union. Fascinating.

  • 6 years ago

    The Confederate flag was the common flag representing the confederate states. The flag is forever a part of this country's history during a very volatile period. Over the years since then the flag has come to symbolize different things to different people. Slavery was abolished a long time ago and I seriously think anyone wants to go back to there. Black American's can hold any job or office they're skilled to hold, so I seriously think the flag stands for slavery or holding Blacks down. Now there may be some( and there are always a few who take things to the extreme) who see the flag as a symbol for white supremacy. These folks have taken the Confederate flag and made it be something altogether different from the original intent. Let's not forget there are some Blacks who hate whites. There will undoubtedly always be some who just can't let go of their hatred. I think no one today was alive during the Civil War. So the flag for most is just a historical relic. It's a neutral object. What a person today projects upon this symbol of history is their choice, but do know we are not living in that era. Choose not to think of it negatively and this symbol will not be negative. In the past it represented the choice of people to fight for what they believed was right for them at that time. In the end we have a stronger, united country, and I believe each branch of the military is supplied by more Southerners who volunteer to defend us all. Let's be united and learn from history. Let's not allow an old flag to become a brick wall.

  • 1 decade ago

    The Confederate Flag is often seen to represent racism for the reason you said - the south supported slavery. Slavery was the key issue in the Civil War and I think to discount it as THE cause of the Civil War would be incorrect (personal opinion, and I wasn't there). Because the Confederacy was so pro-slavery, civil rights proponents would like to remove all its symbols from common usage.

    Throughout the years, the Confederacy itself has come to be known synonymously with pro-slavery/racism. Thus, so has the flag. The other causes of the south should not be forgotten, though. However, many people today flat out use the flag to proclaim their racism with pride. This small group of people has caused the flag to be seen in a negative light.

    I agree that use of the Confederate Flag or allowance to fly the flag must be a careful decision. It can certainly have very innocent and even noble meaning, but it can easily be exploited, if you will, to promote racism and intolerance.

    I remember all the fuss over flying the flag over a Confederate Cemetery (or something similar) and I thought that was a perfectly acceptable use of the flag. To ban it completely would be to forget an important part of our history and the strong beliefs of a lot of people.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    You are SO right! But unfortunately, racist/white supremacist groups like the KKK "adopted" the Confederate flag as their symbol, thus casting a dark shadow on the beautiful flag. Soon, people came to equate the flag with racism. It's sad, because teh War Between the States was so little about slavery and so much about state's rights. It's also sad that the "history" of how slaves were treated focused on the few ignorant "owners" instead of the majority of folks who truly cared for their "people." Even then, slavery was wrong, no two ways about it! By the way, I am a white female from Georgia.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Recently, I took a trip to St. Simon Island (close to Brunswick,GA). I saw the biggest display of the Confederate flag in my whole life. There were hats, scarves, signs on cars, any and everything that you can possibly think of. I personally don't like the flag. I understand the history and all that (states' rights), but I think it's harder for other people to understand where AAs (African Americans) come from. It's not that I think it means racism. I do think that it makes me more concious of the people and the area surrounding me. It's like a emblem that tells me to "stay alert" because some people do think it's about racism and I don't want to be caught in a situation where my life could be in jeopardy.

    While I was in St. Simon, I also was a victim of BLATANT prejudice and racism. So maybe whites don't understand what kind of things go on because they don't have the experiences that AAs have, but I think people shouldn't be ignorant enough to believe that the flag is only about states' rights.

  • 1 decade ago

    Perception is reality. Because the initial cause of the civil war dealt with the south not wanting to free their slave, which later turned into state's rights, Their flag is now associated with racism by some. But not all people still hold that grudge, in fact, many (black) hip-hop artists from the South have displayed the Confederate flag in their videos. I think it's mainly the older generation that still thinks that flag signifies racism, the younger generation is either ignorant of the history or just don't care.

  • 1 decade ago

    Uninformed and ill-educated people would only believe that the Confederate Flag is an offical symbol of racism.

    But there is a problem. Many racists display the confederate flag as a symbol of white pride.

    Officially, it is not a symbol of racism.

    Unofficially, it is to some extent.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Given that the economy of the Confederacy was based upon slave labor, and given that the Confederacy seceded from the Union because of the possibility that slavery would be abolished in the Union, and given that almost all of the prominent leaders of the Confederacy were slave-owners: there is no reasonable way to detach the stigma of slavery from the legacy of the Confederacy or its symbols, such as the Confederate Flag.

    As a Southerner, I am greatly mortified that so many of my countrymen...for the South is a country apart...still cling to such a hateful and offensive symbol from the most tragic period in our past. Attempts to detach responsibility for slavery from the symbols of the Confederacy will fail as surely as trying to separate the symbols of Nazism from the horrors of the Holocaust. If the South needs its own flag, then let it be a new one that does not bear the stain of slavery upon it.

  • 1 decade ago

    I'm mulatto from the south but live in the north. When you see people here with a confederate flag they use it for racism because they think it bothers the black kids at school. I see it as a southern symbol of the confederate. Nothing racist just of the south, I'd have one if my mom would let me, she white.

    I believe the old saying goes," Pride not prejudice."

    When you see a confederate flag down south, its usually for the ancestry, but it can be for racism, the conferderacy did want to keep their slaves.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I've always thought that was an odd concept also. Because a few use it in a negative way doesn't change its original use. In the town I live in it is illegal to display a Confederate Flag on your house. Is that retarded or what? Isn't that denying freedom of speech? People get far too wrapped up in symbols instead of paying attention to real issues.

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