Social Question

Pretty_Lilly's avatar

What are your thoughts on a car painted with the Confederate Flag ?

Asked by Pretty_Lilly (4652points) April 14th, 2010

I went for my morning walk and saw a 2010 Dodge Charger same color as General Lee in the Dukes of Hazzard even with Old Dixie in the paintwork.
It came to mind,how much hell,he must get from it as many people see the flag as offensive and associated with white power & The Klan as a Swastika.
Would you be offended if you saw such car or just ignore it as being his personal choice to express himself.

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60 Answers

CMaz's avatar

Big deal. As long as it is a good paint job.

Should we dis, Japaneses, Germans, or Russians?

Lets not forget the British.

Cruiser's avatar

I wouldn’t let this… http://www.autoblog.com/2005/08/05/dodge-charger-general-lee-edition-up-for-auction-on-ebay/2 bother you! I think it’s a pretty awesome ride!

Facade's avatar

You make it sound as though we are not supposed to be offended by personal choices.
Displaying a confederate flag so boldly is in bad taste, not to mention ugly.

Pretty_Lilly's avatar

@Facade It wasn’t as he had a White Power sticker or the Klan flag ! A few years ago a saw a car with a ton of black power bumper stickers some of them stating “I hate Honkies”
& F* White America ,,,,,Guess what,,,,,their personal choice !!!!!

crazyzo2000's avatar

Yeah, they could possibly just be nostalgic for the Dukes of Hazzard show. I mean, it IS a beautiful car.

beautifulbobby193's avatar

People should be allowed to do what they like. But if your message is offensive you leave yourself, and your car, as a target.

tinyfaery's avatar

My thoughts are, I am not getting in that car.

DarkScribe's avatar

it as many people see the flag as offensive and associated with white power & The Klan as a Swastika.

Maybe you should get yourself a job as a projectionist. You seem to have the experience and qualifications.

carolinasummers's avatar

No, I wouldn’t be offended by a Confederate battle flag.

john65pennington's avatar

Cruiser, went to the site and its a beauty.

bob_'s avatar

Word association game!

Car painted with the Confederate flag: redneck!

gailcalled's avatar

A neighbor here (NYS) drives an adorable little Mini Cooper with the Union Jack painted on the roof. Rule, Britannia.

john65pennington's avatar

I have a question related to this question.

Whats the difference in having a confederate state flag painted on a vehicle, compared to a a Mexican flag? especially, if you personally know the owner of the Mexican car is an illegal immigrant? how do you feel about this?

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

The sin was calling that hunk of junk, restyled Chrysler 300 sedan, a “Charger.” 4 doors? You gotta be kidding me. That car is butt ugly, and a good paint job ain’t gonna help it any.

But yeah, it’s time to bury the Stars and Bars. Why is that wound still open after 145 years?

Pretty_Lilly's avatar

@john65pennington I was wondering when you were going to start with you illegal immigrant rants,,,,I remember them from AB !
The difference would be Old Dixie is associated with Slavery,The Klan,Red Necks and black American sees it as a symbol representing hated toward them !!

mattbrowne's avatar

Same thoughts as I have about cars painted with an Apartheid flag. Disgusting to say the least.

UScitizen's avatar

Anyone who finds such paint offensive, should take the chip off their shoulder and relax.

john65pennington's avatar

Pretty lilly, thanks. maybe i was just testing your memory banks?

gailcalled's avatar

@bob_ : Ha. The photos are probably not of the same three cars, I guess.

bob_'s avatar

@gailcalled I don’t think so, no :)

bob_'s avatar

The Italians seem to be doing it, too.

aprilsimnel's avatar

It’s his/her choice to have it and it’s my choice to dislike it. But if a mofo like that tries to drag me off and sell me, I’ma fuck his shit up.

Just sayin.’

Qingu's avatar

I wouldn’t be offended, I’d just think the owner of the car was a moron.

And possibly a racist, but perhaps not.

Definitely a moron, though.

Trillian's avatar

Exactly what @Qingu said, and I wouldn’t waste time being offended. All those who fly the Rebel flag are not racists, just like all black people who wear the X are not racists.

Arisztid's avatar

@Cruiser That offends me. This is the General Lee ! Give me classic metal all the way.

Cruiser's avatar

Sorry there @Arisztid ! I feel the same about the new Camaro’s! ;)

Arisztid's avatar

@Cruiser I… shall… live… and I am with you there. Give me 1968–1972 Detroit metal. It is almost an insult to modernize those beauties.

Cruiser's avatar

<——- @Arisztid How’s that?

Arisztid's avatar

@Cruiser I was just drooling over it.

Oh to answer the question, the Confederate Flag is heritage with some assholes using it as a hate symbol.

I would not have a problem with people having it on their car and lived with a Southern family, very proud of their Confederate heritage, who flew it a couple of times a year. I am not white, they were not racist, and I do not see it as a racist symbol.

DarkScribe's avatar

So sad. I guess that Johnny Cash was a racist by some of the standards exhibited here. Should they ban “Johnny Yuma”? Are all southerners who have a family who were confederates supposed to hang their heads in shame?

The Confederate Flag means more than racism, it has historical significance and can still inspire pride.

Pretty_Lilly's avatar

@DarkScribe You just don’t get it do you,obviously you don’t live in the US D’Ya ?
No one is saying the Confederate Flag is a racist symbol but Black Americans hate it,for you to display the flag,,, to them you might as well have a flag saying I Hate N****.
Too bad you do not live in the US otherwise I would mail you a flag so you could display it on your vehicle and lets see how long before you get jumped or are involved in a road rage incident !

CMaz's avatar

We hate the Confederate Flag.

But driving a Mitsubishi or a Volkswagen is ok.

So screwed up.

DarkScribe's avatar

@Pretty_Lilly You just don’t get it do you,?

There is nothing to “get” that I don’t understand and reject.

obviously you don’t live in the US D’Ya

Not now, but I used to – Texas and then California. I still have family in Texas. I don’t live my life by tiptoeing around trying not to offend other people. If I don’t mean anything offensive but someone decides to take it that way – tough! They have to live with it – I’ll have already forgotten about them.

If there is one thing that I am not, it is politically correct.

Keysha's avatar

I find that some black people use the fact that this country had slaves (not all of which were black, by the way) as a way to enable themselves. Because of that, they feel a need to be very vocal whenever anything comes along that they think they can twist to their advantage. I do not say all, I say some.

And, sadly, there are those that are not black let them get away with it. I happen to like the confederate flag. I know it as a symbol of pride in who and what you are, if you are from the south. It was flown by many states, not all of which flew it for the right to own slaves. Some flew it because they felt it was their right to secede from the union. Some flew it in support of their neighbors. Some flew it simply because they felt the country as a whole did not have the right to dictate the rights of the state.

Regardless, I have no problem with the rebel flag. And whenever someone comes up to me, and spouts the garbage about it being nothing but a symbol of slavery, I ask them if they were ever a slave. And then I ask if they have any known ancestors that were slaves in states when the rebel flag was used. Most of the time they cannot say yes to either. So then, I shove their garbage down their throats and say, when it affects you, directly, and not just because of your desire for entitlement, then you can try and dictate what I do. Until then, shut up, go away, and deal with it, Because your right to entitlement ends, when it impacts me. If it were valid, as in the swastika (which, by the way, I only have problems with if it is the Nazi swastika, not the hundred or so other versions, including good luck symbols that are older than Nazi Germany), then I would comply out of compassion. But this is simply stupidity and, for the most part, the cry of people wanting everything they can get, for as little as possible.

Qingu's avatar

@Keysha, why did you feel the need to bring up “some blacks” feelings of entitlement re: their ancestors being enslaved and deprived of property and civil rights for generations? I don’t really see what that has to do with this thread, or why discussing the confederate flag should provoke your desire to whine about some black people.

As for “liking” the confederate flag, I fail to see why any rational or moral person would have pride in a culture that started a war and killed thousands of people for the right to own other human beings as property. And if you want to play the “it’s about states’ rights” card, I suggest reading the various states’ articles of confederation which state quite clearly that they’re seceding because of slavery.

Pretty_Lilly's avatar

@Qingu concerning your quote : “I fail to see why any rational or moral person would have pride in a culture that killed people for the right to own other human beings as property”
Do you mean like Old Glory (The American Flag) flown by the US Cavalry & The US Government while they decimated the entire American Indian race ??

Qingu's avatar

I’m no flag-waiving patriot myself, but I would argue that the American flag, as a symbol, covers a much wider breadth of ideas than simply manifest destiny.

Whereas the Confederate flag doesn’t symbolize much else except a bunch of states who would rather violently rebel than allow the federal government to take away their right to treat humans as chattel.

ucme's avatar

They’re just good ol boys
Never meaning no harm
Probably.

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

I’d recommend never taking that car to south central LA.

JLeslie's avatar

@ChazMaz I don’t think it is the same. The flag symbolizes slavery, hatred, violence, and wanting to secede from the union, it is holding onto the old south for me. Buying a German car is buying it from German’s today. 50 years ago Jewish people would not buy a German car, understandable, but now Germany is a different place. It is the American way to judge each person, I would even say each generation, on its’ own merits. Eventually we have to let go of the past (although we never forget). So, we buy German cars, BUT we do not think it is ok to wear a swastika, because that represents the past.

@all I see cenfederate flags all to often. My neighbor down the street has one on his house. I would find the car in question offensive. Not simply for what it represents to me, but these are the same people that walk around calling liberals anti-American, the south wanted to leave the union, I also have some of them around me saying that we would have been better if we had kept the rule that only land owners should be able to vote. I mean who else would say that, even think it, than a southerner? I do not think all southerners are assholes, not at all, but if they wave that flag I think it is more likely.

I have said this before, you have to consider the minority. I can not speak for black people, but as a Jew when I see a swastika I think that person hates me and would like to see me dead. It is frightening. If your intention is not to scare people or to be perceived as a racist/anti-semite, then you can’t use those symbols.

CMaz's avatar

“Buying a German car is buying it from German’s today”
It is not “the German car” that is the issue. Volkswagen was the rebel flag of that time.

“but now Germany is a different place.”

So is the south. Same difference. That being 150 years ago.

DominicX's avatar

The Civil War ended 145 years ago. GET OVER IT.

That’s the only thing it means to me. People who can’t get over the Civil War. Time to move on.

JLeslie's avatar

@ChazMaz The German flag does not offend me the symbols of the third reich do. I do not take offense to people being proud of being southerners, I can understand identifying with the south, but that is different than identifying with the ideals of the old south/confederacy.

CMaz's avatar

So you are saying that people that fly the confederate flag are saying that they want slavery back?

Then people that drive Volkswagen’s (symbol of the third reich) want Jewish genocide.

JLeslie's avatar

@ChazMaz No, I do not think that. I am saying to the person who it frightens or conjures up bad feelings, the minority, it represents hatred, I am not talking about the intent of the person who is utilizing the symbol.

But, I do get your point. I did not use the wedding march at my wedding, because Wagner was Hitler’s favorite composer. It is not a comment on Wagner, but Hitler played his music in the camps, and so Jews would avoid music that might conjure up memories of that horrible time for surviving relatives. I guess reasonably you could say the same Jews might get bad feelings when they see a Volkswagen, especially an old one. My grandmother would not be happy I have three German cars in my garage currently (my family did not “survive” the holocaust).

I guess for me it is my experience. The Germans I know are not antisemitic, they are mostly horrified by that part of history, and so I have been able to change my perception of buying and using German products. If I meet a bunch of southerners who love the confederate flag and who appear to not be prejudice and are just as happy to have a black neighbor, boss, teacher as a white one, I will let you know. For me, they seem to keep the meaning of the flag alive.

I guess I contradicted slightly my first paragraph in this post.

As a side note I have to say I hate disagreeing with you :)

lilikoi's avatar

My thought:

“LOL. I must be in Texas.” ;)

JLeslie's avatar

@lilikoi I thought Texas likes their own flag. Interesting. I think of Texans as being Texans before they are Americans or part of the confederacy.

bob_'s avatar

This is what I do with Texas.

Keysha's avatar

@Qingu To address your post:

First of all, you state that they were the ‘culture that started a war and killed thousands of people for the right to own other human beings as property.

Look at the number of Native Americans that were killed for THIS culture. Look at the number of minorities that are discriminated against, often to the point of suicide or death.

Second, you seem to be, as so many are, under the mistaken idea that the Civil War was waged because of the right to own slaves. Period. Yes, they desired to own slaves, but the underlying question you need to ask is why it was so important, and why that desire would cause a war.

One of the main problems was about taxes paid on goods brought into this country from foreign countries – i.e. a tariff. Southerners felt these tariffs were unfair and aimed specifically at them because they imported a wider variety of goods than most Northern people. Southern exporters sometimes had to pay higher amounts for shipping their goods overseas because of the distance from southern ports and sometimes pay unequal tariffs imposed by a foreign country on some of their goods. This also affected Southern banks that found themselves paying higher interest rates on loans made with banks in the North. The situation grew worse after several “panics”, including one in 1857 that affected more Northern banks than Southern. Southern financiers found themselves burdened with high payments just to save Northern banks that had suffered financial losses through poor investment.

If you look into why slavery was so important, you will find that, in the south, the main crop in an agricultural south was cotton. Cotton was, at that time, a very labor-intensive crop to grow and profit from. In the north, things like wheat were grown, which could be harvested by machine. So the north did not rely on manual labor. I do wish, also, to point out that the self-same people that demanded an end to slavery often had indentured servants which were, in effect, slaves. The fact that there was a time limit on their slavery was inconsequential, as they rarely lived to see their contract come to fruitation. If they did, they were free, but were absolutely destitute. Not much of an improvement. Anyway, back to my point. If the North would have succeeded in abolishing slavery without a war, the south would have been devastated, financially. The north would have, quite literally, run and owned the country. The fact that it took a war, simply disguised the result. The devastation in the south, financially, after the war, was not so much due to losing the war, as the loss of so much aid and income.

As far as me ‘whining about some black people,’ first, it was not whining, any more than your post is. It was me, stating my position and belief. And if you remove those that complain the Confederate WAR flag (there were several Confederate flags, the one in question was used during the war) being a sign of slavery – mostly black people that feel the white people should apologize for slavery, even though their own people were the ones that sold slaves they had to the white man (thus the slave owners were black Africans in their own right – where is the outcry there?).

You comment says you do not see why I had to bring it up, and that it has nothing to do with this thread. Ok, tell me who it is that feels so upset about the Confederate flag being ‘a symbol of slavery and oppression’ then? Considering most of the slaves and oppression in this country have occurred under the ‘stars and stripes’ than under the Confederate flag, I believe your thinking is skewed. I also think you just skimmed what I said, had a knee-jerk reaction, and blew off, instead of thinking. I may be wrong, but at least I did not call you a whiner or suggest you research your topic. I know my topic better than you could possibly imagine. I debated it in school. I have sources to back up my findings, and know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that you are the one that lacks knowledge. Not me.

JLeslie's avatar

I need to clarify that my family was not in Europe during the Holocaust, except my uncle, who was American, did fight on the European front during WWII.

mattbrowne's avatar

@ChazMaz – I don’t follow your logic comparing the Volkswagen logo with Nazi symbols to show that the confederate flag does not symbolize an oppressive system. The Volkswagen factory was created by entrepreneurs who wanted to build and sell cars. Wagner created operas because he loved to compose music. The Nazi created the swastika flag, Parteiadler, SS death’s head insignia and so forth and they represented their perverse ideology.

CMaz's avatar

@JLeslie – “As a side note I have to say I hate disagreeing with you :)”
It is just a meeting of the minds, that is all. :-) All roads lead to the same place.

@mattbrowne – The Volkswagen was a Hitler creation, it means “people’s car. Adolf Hitler was the driving force behind the car.
“The Volkswagen factory was created by entrepreneurs who wanted to build and sell cars.” Not true, those entrepreneurs wanted to go in another direction, in respect to the auto industry.

The swastika is not a Nazi creation but goes back to the Neolithic period. They adapted it for their use.

My logic in comparing the Volkswagen logo with Nazi symbols. And how it plays with the Rebel Flag. Is that they all have a connection to evil intent.

Like the Volkswagen, there is a positive twist to it. It is a good car. Hitler is not in control any more.
The Confederate Flag is more about tradition and unity for a group of people that banded together.

There is a hockey team. The New Jersey Devils. Should we avoid that team because of the use of the word Devil? Is the team or the people that like the team Evil?

The Confederate Flag. Has issues connected to IT’S PAST. The Confederate Solider was a father, a brother, fighting to protect their home and their family.
They were not bad people, staying in context of that time in history.
Same with the Nazi’s. WE don’t condemn Germans for the past. They fought for what they believed in. Home and family.

We either condemn the past in it entirety, that would include companies like Volkswagen and Mitsubishi . The people of Japan and Germany. Or we see the positive twist in it and move on.

Most people that fly the Confederate Flag pay respect to their past family.

If it is more then that… Well, there are people that fly the American Flag having a more sinister directive also. Understand it for what it was, but see it for what it is.

Cruiser's avatar

@ChazMaz <<fist bump>>

wilma's avatar

Lurve for that answer @ChazMaz

JLeslie's avatar

I still think we have to be sensitive to the minority. Imagine if an Arab immigrant had a tattoo of NYC sky line including the world trade towers and also a muslim symbol on some art of his body. 15 years ago he might have wanted both of those because he was a Muslim immigrant who loved NY. Now, people would be freaked by that tattoo I think. Things change.

@ChazMaz Not sure if you were in FL during the whole Elian Gonzalez thing? There were Cubans in the streets, fighting to keep Elian here and marching around waving the Cuban flag. I guess they think of their old Cuba, I understand their longing for a different time, but to me waving that flag while trying to keep the child in America was a slap in the face. They want the American government to maintain the child here, because we are the land of freedom and they fly their flag? I would totally understand having a Cuban flag in their home, they are Cuban, they are proud of their heritage.

My husband has a big Mexican flag hanging in our garage, but I cannot imagine putting that flag out on the front of my house, unless we also had an American flag flying along with it, even then not likely except maybe if Mexico won the world cup :). My husband has spoken about getting an American flag, because the house we live in now has one of those thingies on the house to fly one. He has never mentioned putting his Mexican one up.

My high school boyfriend’s family came here from Ecuador, they had little American flags in their house, his father once told me, “this is my country now,” he meant America.

So, the people I have always been surrounded by, who are close to me, have embraced the American flag, while still maintaining their identity from the “old country.” I guess I have a similar expectation of sotherners, fly the American flag, and keep the pride you have about the confederacy and your heritage closer to the vest.

Qingu's avatar

@Keysha, you have some good points. Certainly the South’s economy was based on slavery; if the North hadn’t industrialized, I’m sure that they would also have been pro-slavery. This is a very Marxist explanation of history—economic determinism.

But while I think there is merit to it, it also ignores the very real cultural forces that propagated slavery in the South. It wasn’t simply an economic issue for many Southerners, it was a moral one. Many pro-slavery pamphlets argue (correctly) that the Bible explicitly allows slavery. They claim that the blacks are inherently inferior to whites and that only blacks could possibly do the work required in the cotton fields. You are ignoring the extent to which slavery was informed and promoted by a savage kind of racism (far beyond any “racism” that people get accused of today); blacks were considered cursed, the descendants of the tribe of Ham.

Also, in the long-term, the South did end up industrializing (it was inevitable). I disagree with your assertion that the South would have been devastated if slavery was abolished without a war; first of all, obviously, the war made it much worse (i.e. Sherman’s march), and secondly, all societies eventually adapted to industrialization and a capitalist economy. If the slaves would have been treated as human beings instead of animals, they would have been potential consumers. Perhaps a more painful transition than in the factory-friendly north, but the South, on the whole, absolutely refused to even countenance the possibility of making this transition, and this was largely because of cultural racism and moral/religious support of the institution of slavery.

And let’s be clear: the institution of slavery was an absolute fucking atrocity. You brought up the slaughter of the native Americans and that was also an absolute atrocity. Do you understand why people who would try to mitigate that near-genocide and excuse the immorality of Manifest Destiny with, for example, economic determinism, would probably offend the descendants of those who were oppressed in Manifest Destiny? The people who still have to live with the scars inflicted? The same applies to slavery. The reason black people are overwhelmingly poor today is that generations of the slavery inflicted a poverty cycle on their entire generation.

Now, we can debate about what should be done about that. I think liberal social policies are the best way to deal with it; providing a safety net to help people of all colors escape from poverty cycles. I don’t think reparations are a good idea, and I’m skeptical about the use of affirmative action, though I can see its importance in some regions.

But more importantly than trying to avoid offending people, or blaming people, I think, is the idea that we should acknowledge the evils of our past honestly. It’s not about “apologizing” for it, since people today aren’t responsible. It’s about recognizing it for what it was, instead of revising our histories so we can be more “proud” of our barbaric past culture.

mattbrowne's avatar

@ChazMaz – Good explanation. Thanks!

Keysha's avatar

@Qingu I agree we should acknowledge the evils of our past honestly. But acknowledging does not equal ‘casting aside any part of our history we are proud of or hold of value for reasons other than that which causes pain to some’. Nor does it equal repeated apologies for things we were not responsible for. I am from Germany. I agree the swastika should be banned. But should Buddhists and Hindus be forced to abandon a symbol of their religion which predates it by quite some time, simply because some people see it as a Nazi symbol of repression and terror? No.

I am sick to death of the way this country caters to certain groups to the detriment of others. I have actually been called prejudiced for not being willing to break rules for an employee where I worked once. Those that wish to enable themselves will do so on the backs of those that will allow them to. If this is such a free country that the KKK and Black Panthers are allowed to demonstrate, hold rallies, and be active organizations, then the outcry over the personal decision of individuals to display something they value, for whatever reason (usually NOT related to slavery) is patiently ridiculous.

Oh, by the way, the KKK tends to demonstrate under the Stars and Stripes. And many Muslims dislike our flag. Perhaps we should ban the use of any flag, anywhere in this country, for fear of offending someone.

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