Sep 19

MB Dems Letter to the Morongo Basin on the Confederate Flag

The following letter from the Morongo Basin Democratic Club was recently published in the Hi Desert Star.


To Our Neighbors in the Morongo Basin:
In light of the racially charged violence and chaos in Charlottesville, we’ve all been forced to take a long hard look at ourselves and our communities. Luckily we have not had to confront neo-Nazi marches here in our own backyard, but there is one issue that needs to be addressed: the confederate battle flag.
Before we get too far into this, let it be said no one is questioning your right to fly the flag or express your views. Freedom of expression is at the very heart of the American experiment. However, America, and the values it stands for, is at the very heart of this debate.
The confederate battle flag was born during the American civil war, when the southern states seceded from the union and founded the Confederate States of America. The flag represents a time when half the country was in open rebellion against the other half, and human beings were bought and sold as a commodity. While some families with roots in the South may have ancestors who fought in the war, the root cause of the war cannot be swept under the rug. This is not a time in our collective history to be proud of. We must learn its lessons lest we be doomed to repeat them. The confederate battle flag is a symbol of this disgraceful period in our collective past. It represents divisiveness and inhuman levels of racial inequality not seen since that bloody war that nearly destroyed this nation. It is a symbol of bigotry, hatred, and as we saw in Charlottesville, is often flown in concert with the Nazi flag. Its display alongside the swastika is intended to strike fear in the hearts of those who see it.
Today, there are a number of these flags displayed throughout the Morongo Basin. They are hoisted from flagpoles in yards, on bumper stickers, on t-shirts, and elsewhere in our community.
We ask you, as fellow Americans and as your neighbors, to think about what the flag represents, and then, in the spirit of decency and our shared American values, to take the flag down. This is an appeal to think of your fellow Americans and to help make it just a bit easier for us to all live together in this great nation.
With respect, 
The Morongo Basin Democratic Club

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