Lifelong southerner and Civil War buff Bill Kristol expanded on his principled defense of the flying Confederate Flag this morning:
In a nutshell, Kristol is for flying the Confederate Flag because liberals are against it. (To be completely fair, he’s not saying he thinks that states should continue to fly the Confederate Flag, merely that Amazon and Walmart are wrong not to sell it, and I do think that the issue of individuals flying the Confederate Flag is different than states doing it.)
In other words, he’s for it because he’s an asshole. And the same is true of many who fly the Confederate Flag: they fly it because they’re assholes. (I don’t want to say “most” or “all” because I don’t know enough here but I’d hazard a guess it’s “most” these days.)
Too often in our official discourse, the explanation “because people are assholes” is sorely missing from the conversation. Humans are fueled creatively by their massive hatred of other humans.
If there was a flag that symbolized my hatred of Ron Fournier and David Brooks, I would fly it. But, even then, I wouldn’t want it flown above my state capital and I’d understand if Amazon and Walmart didn’t want to sell it.
Is it really that hard to understand that state capitals shouldn’t fly symbols of hatred towards African-Americans, or that retailers may not want to be in the business of selling such symbols?