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Letter: Healing the racial divide

Editor, Gazette-Journal:

Kudos to South Carolina’s Republican leaders for removing the Confederate flag from its state capitol and to Virginia’s governor for removing the flag from state-issued license plates.

After the end of the Civil War, the Confederate flag was rarely displayed in public. It was resurrected by white supremacist segregationists in the 1950s and ’60s in response to the growing civil rights movement. The Confederate flag is not a symbol of southern pride, but rather a symbol of rebellion and racism.

Taking down the Confederate flag is only the beginning of our national conversation of racial reconciliation. Jefferson Davis Highway should be renamed. Why does the president of the losing side in a rebellion have a highway named after him? What other country in the world names numerous military bases after rebel generals who were defeated? Why do we have a Virginia state holiday in January that honors leaders of the rebellion: Lee-Jackson Day?


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