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Op-ed: Ban the hateful confederate flag in PEI and elsewhere

KJIPUKTUK (Halifax) – Some guy in PEI by the name of Joe Rooney is mad that the confederate flag he was flying in his yard was stolen. So mad that he wrote a letter to the Guardian, PEI’s prominent local paper.

Under the telling headline Confederate flag emblem of heritage, Rooney argues that the flag merelyrepresents freedom and independence from oppression and tyranny.”

Who is he trying to kid?

“This flag comes down today!” In South Carolina Bree Newsome removed the confederate flag from State Capitol grounds. Something similar just happened in PEI. Photo Democracy Now.

During the U.S. Civil War the confederate battle flag was flown by the states who fought to preserve the cruel and inhumane institution of slavery. Ever since, Ku Klux Klan members and other white supremacists, American Nazis, and similar repugnant groups have used the confederate flag for their propaganda purposes. Mr. Rooney should consider the company he keeps.

Various letters written in response have made short thrift of Rooney’s reasons for flying the flag, although none as fitting as the initial removal of the flag by one or more unknown individual(s).

A similar discussion as is now taking place in PEI last occurred in Nova Scotia two summers ago, triggered by events that transpired in Truro. At that time a group of Nova Scotians asked that all white supremacist symbols be banned in Nova Scotia and indeed in all of Canada.

That the blatantly racist confederate flag is once again the topic of discussion in the Maritimes, reminds us that the need to ban this symbol of hate and white supremacy in Canada has not gone away.

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