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Burnett's Urban Etiquette

Monday, May 15, 2006

Oddest thing I've seen...(today,anyway)

A brown-skinned woman (I was close enough to fairly assume, I think, that she was of African or Latin descent) parked her car at the curb next to me as I walked by on the sidewalk. The car she drove had a bawdy Confederate flag bumper sticker mounted at the top of the windshield.

History and its interpretations can be crazy. But I'd love to hear the story behind her and that sticker.

Maybe she borrowed the car. Or maybe she bought it used and the sticker was already there. But why not scrape it off, then?

Am I nuts, or is that not odd?

3 Comments:

  • You know, in what was a peripatetic childhood/life, I spent a good deal of time in the Hampton Roads area. No, not the modern, urban Norfolk, Va Beach area. I'm talking the towns with the Indian names that look straight from the last century.

    Even though I'm pretty young, I grew up where there was a segregated swimming pool, segregated skating nights, etc. Now that may not mean that much in light of the de facto segregation that still exists but the time warp thing did still leave its impression and cause for comparison. As a related aside, Virginia (which as many people know instituted the "massive resistance" program to school integration) had areas with lingering school segregation.

    The schools of my isolated region were among the first to use "tracking" to segregate kids, which is now in use wherever there are integrated schools. I was one of the fortunate kids who by dint of testing, family stature and perhaps "colorism" was allowed to attend the "advanced track" with the respectable White kids. (God help you if you were an underclass White person of "White Trash".)

    We learned in school that the first battle in the Civil War or moe descriptively, the War of Northern Agression, was Ft. Sumter, S.C. and the SECOND battle was at Manassas, Virginia (Known in Northern texts as Bull Run; that Robert E. Lee was the strongest anti-slavery activist in the country, as was Stonewall Jackson, that the war was about mercantilism and states rights, that Blacks fought proudly and bravely for the Confederacy, that Virginia was second only to Pennsylvania in free Blacks. Slavery was compared with child labor, indentured apprenticeships, and other mistreatment of workers in the North. Slavery would have ended sooner had the South won. OF COURSE the Confederate flag was a regional symbol. It also stood for politeness, intellectualism, duty, and a simpler rural way of life.

    As the best student in the school, I became the youngest to debate the side of John C. Calhoun, proponent of states' rights, in our district debate. (My parents weren't aware of the specifics.)

    When I see that flag on the car of a person of color I still can't help but laugh. A fable agreed upon indeed.

    By Blogger Miamista, at 6:04 PM  

  • One of my buddies in high school bought a car that had a bumper sticker that said "pull down your pants and make it happen." Seriously, though, the confederate flag should be dropped. It doesn't seem to bring up good ideas when people see it.

    By Anonymous ChrisA, at 10:31 PM  

  • One of my buddies in high school bought a car that had a bumper sticker that said "pull down your pants and make it happen." Seriously, though, the confederate flag should be dropped. It doesn't seem to bring up good ideas when people see it.

    By Anonymous ChrisA, at 10:31 PM  

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