Confederate Flag Flies Again in Marion County

Okay, time to layer in some complexity, this one is probably not as obvious as you think it is…

1) Marion County has a “five flags” display outside their courthouse, in other words they fly the historic flags of the five nations (France, Spain, Britain, USA, and CSA) which at one time or another have flown over the state of Florida. That the Confederate States was one of those five nations is a historical fact.

2) If you are going to have a “five flags” display, the flag representing the Confederate States should be one of the three (or more counting variations) national flags of the CSA, and not the “battle flag”, which was never used as a national flag. Setting aside for the moment the racial connotations the battle flag has taken on after the war, it simply is not the correct flag to fly to represent the nation that was the Confederate States of America. To Marion County’s credit, the flag they use is the third national flag of the CSA, and not the battle flag.

3) While the display is both historically valid and accurate, one should remember that lynchings were widespread across the South up until the mid 1930’s, and Marion County led the state in the number of lynchings of black men. Florida as a whole had more lynchings of blacks per capita than any other southern state. I’m not sure historical validity and accuracy is of much comfort to the families of those who were murdered not that long ago based on the color of their skin.

4) I wonder why supporters of Marion County’s flag display aren’t doing more to honor and embrace their French, Spanish, and British heritage in the same way they embrace their very brief period under CSA sovereignty. I honestly can’t remember the last time I saw a royal French or Spanish flag flying from the back of a pickup truck, and Union Flags in these parts are pretty much only used to identify Doctor Who fans (a few of whom do drive pickup trucks).