When I see a confederate flag in a neighbors yard, my heart hurts. Those confederate bumper stickers on the back of cars make me cringe. I'm sure its not just me and I am sure it is not just black folks who have these reactions.
Until a few days ago, I would say I leaned heavily toward taking confederate monuments down...today, not so much. My early twenties, college-educated daughter and I were recently watching news about the confederate monuments coming down in Louisiana. She said she was torn on the issue. I listened as she explained, "We can never forget what happened and what can happen again." She went on to say that although many celebrate and praise those memories, for us and most Americans they are reminders of a horrid time in our history...these relics are not just reminders for African Americans but reminders for all people who understand the consequences of hate and the disregard for one individual's or group of people's rights.
This conversation reminded me of the words of George Santayana, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." While there are places, I certainly don't think these relics are appropriate, they need to be to be somewhere. Even I, need to look upon them every once in awhile. And although this history is etched in the minds of many, that is not the case for our younger generations.