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Letter: Flag not a representation of slavery

The Confederate flag, or more appropriately, the Confederate battle flag. I truly understand how this has become, for some, a representation of hate, slavery or other atrocities. But this interpretation is in the minority. Those who have studied history, even elementary history, know that what we are talking about is the Confederate battle flag, and not the flag of the Confederacy.

This flag is symbolized by many across society as similar to the Nazi flag, full of hate and horrific activity. But I offer a different view.

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I am an "northerner," raised in Minnesota, and was always against our faults regarding slavery, but the Confederate battle flag is not a representation of that.

I spent my entire life, first in the Air Force, and then in the Department of Defense, doing everything I can to preserve our country. I am a student of history and have a much different look at the Confederate battle flag.

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Most of those fighting for the South in the Civil War were not fighting for slavery, but for their way of life, which they perceived was under attack by an industrial North. Right or wrong, they were not fighting for slavery.

The Confederate battle flag, to me, represents only those Americans who fought and died for their country. Even Congress has recognized the Southerners as American Veterans who fought and died for their country.

Every symbol out there has some intent and purpose, whether it might be in preventing a repeat of history, or simply a recognition of a family member who was a veteran of that horrific war. As one may know, Maryland was one state that truly pitted brother against brother in that war. Shall we recognize one veteran and not the other?

Intent is always an individual right. Who are we to support? Shall it be the one who, by representing the Confederate battle flag, is remembering a family veteran, or anyone whose interpretation is that of hate?

Good luck on that one. May I suggest that a referendum of the populace may be the appropriate move. For the school system to decide based on the feelings of a minority would be lame.

Dave Campbell

Finksburg

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