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There's a logical reason the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company was flying a Confederate flag today, right?

Somebody carries a confederate battle flag every year in the parade. Anybody know why?

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Ask for logical reasons, you are sure to get illogical reasons ... "Tradition"
is the one they will trot out I am sure.

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It's a custom dating back to the Roman conquest of Germany, at least. A legion's standard would be a trophy for the other side.

They probably don't use the original one due to its age.

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Right, like all the Nazi flags you see at WW2 parades.

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Here we have Berlin in the spring of 45.

https://toritto.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/victory-day.jpg

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Seized in battle by some victorious club member fighting against the Confederates? I can't really think of any other non-awful, non-racist reasons to carry that flag around in this city.

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The Hall of Flags at the State House is great. There are the regimental colors of many Massachusetts Units and Some Captured Flags.

This one looks like it came mail order from China or some pick up truck in New Hampshire just in time for the Jefferson Davis Birthday Celebrations.

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Yesterday brought out a spectrum of military from the Ancients to the Massachusetts National Guard. The Confederate flag came in the hands of two members of the Washington Light Infantry (founded 1807) from Charleston, S.C.

“It’s a damn good flag,’’ said Henry Siegling, 69, of Charleston. “But we’re rookies compared to this bunch.’’

http://www.boston.com/yourtown/boston/downtown/articles/2011/06/07/bosto...

Seems like other honorary/fraternal military organizations came to honor the Ancients and brought their own flag with them. The article's from 2011, but it makes sense it could happen again.

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I didn't see the stars and bars - but here was definitely a flag with palmetto tree and crescent moon.

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...to bring this flag, the last one the Confederacy flew?

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...adopted by General P.G.T. Bauregard in 1861, as the Confederate stars and bars flag was too easily mistaken for the Union stars and stripes.

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just might want to rethink this.

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From their website:
IMAGE(http://www.washingtonlightinfantry.org/wp-content/uploads/annual-banquet.jpg)

[W]hen the War Between the States* developed in 1861, the Washington Light Infantry formed themselves into three companies to remain through the war until 1865. The total number of men enrolled was four hundred and fourteen. At the close of the struggle, its casualties numbered one hundred and fourteen killed, and many others maimed and scarred for life. Official reports show frequent citations of acts of individual heroism and deeds of sublime courage on the part of the Washington Light Infantry officers and men.

The war over, the survivors returned to their homes and, in 1866, they formed what was called the Washington Light Infantry Charitable Association. The organization was the first organization of its kind in the South created to assist the families of those who had fallen or who were disabled by the war.

The Ancient and Honorables should invite them to come without the stars and bars or just stay home next time. Massachusetts spilled untold blood and treasure to stamp out the scourge of Southern secessionism, and flying this flag on the streets of Boston spits in the eye of those hallowed dead.

*"War Between the States" is an alternate name for the War to Preserve the Union used by Confederate apologists.

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"War Between The States" is actually the official term used by the League of Confederate Correctors, who apparently can't stand the word Civil.

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... is an even more favored term by our Souternbrethren.

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War of Northern Aggression is so, well, in-your-face. War Between the States is much more pleasing to the ear. It has the sonorous tones of a dog whistle. (Seriously, though, it's a term promulgated mostly by the Daughters of the Confederacy during Reconstruction to lend a more noble air to their precious Lost Cause.)

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Remember in 2011 when South Sudan voted to secede from Sudan, and was cheered on by the world press? It's kinda the same thing.

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... for membership in the Sons of Confederate Veterans (but I never got around to applying).

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"The war of southern rebellion"

That was the original name for the bloodiest war in American history before the Lost Cause revisionists mounted a sustained, century long propaganda effort to re-write history.

I never tire of pointing out that Robert E. Lee killed more American soldiers than Hitler and Osama Bin Laden combined.

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A friend of mine pointed out that Benedict Arnold gets all the traitor baggage when, really, it ought to be heaped on Lee.

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Robert E. Lee was a colonel in the United States Army, a career military officer. He resigned his commission when it became clear the Army was going to be ordered to invade Virginia, his home state.

Virginia then hired Colonel Lee to help defend the state against the expected invasion. How does defending one's homeland make one a traitor? The patriots who fought at Lexington, Concord, and Bunker Hill (actually, Breed's Hill) fought much as Lee and his men did in defense of their homes and loved ones.

If Lee was a traitor than so was George Washington.

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He led an army against the United States. That's traitorous. And please with the "just defending his homeland" stuff. His army traveled well outside of Virginia's borders.

If you don't believe in the concept of the United States, just say so.

And, yes, Washington was a traitor - to the British.

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Using that logic, you could argue that anyone would be a traitor.

It's all about perspective...

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That's my preferred term.

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... and Expand (sort of like manifest destiny, but with even more expanded borders).

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erase history! This flag is such a part of American history, yes, a war where a lot of blood was shed but to just ignore that it ever existed and people (American people) also died for this flag as well as the Union flag we were Americans fighting Americans. So if we forbid this flag then we may as well say slavery never existed either.

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So if we forbid this flag then we may as well say slavery never existed either.

Try again.

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(American people) also died for this flag as well as the Union flag

Nope. Traitors who started an armed insurrection against America died for this flag. Their political leadership renounced the values of America. Their senior officers renounced the oaths they had taken to uphold and defend the Constitution and deserted from the US armed forces.

Southern foot soldiers enlisted for many reasons, from belief in the cause to solidarity with others in their town to fear of being shunned. Many of them fought and died with valor. Many of them share my last name. But they fought and died for an unjust cause, and that can't be swept under the rug.

Postwar Germany has been forced to find ways to honor the memory and sacrifice of their wartime dead without glorifying the cause they died for. This is a project that has never been undertaken in the post-Reconstruction South.

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> This is a project that has never been undertaken
> in the post-Reconstruction South.

And NEVER will be, alas.

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By that logic, the Colonists who fought against the crown in Lexington and Concord in 1775 were also traitors who we should compare to Nazis.

It's not that the South (or the Colonies) were looking for armed rebellion. They wanted independence from an authority that didn't want to let go.

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I get the point you're trying to make here, anon But the argument only works if you assign moral equivalency to all governments at all times. Was the US government in 1861 as repressive as the British ministry was in 1775?

As an aside, a lot of the colonists that early in the war would have said that they were fighting for their rights as Englishmen under British law against a tyrannical ministry that had usurped the power of the king. But that's kinda beside the point.

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Nonsense.

Jefferson Davis ordered the attack on Fort Sumter, even though he knew the garrison there planned to surrender once it ran out of food in a few weeks. And even before this, force was used to seize federal facilities and ships were fired upon by Confederate forces.

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Well, it was the Jefferson Davis Day state holiday in Alabama today.

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This stone placed outside Jeff Davis' home in New Orleans identifies him as "A Truly Great American."
IMAGE(http://i.imgur.com/cdN8g3Z.jpg)
This hypocrisy knows no bounds.

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Sarah had a perfectly good Monday morning massage ruined by an inanimate object, which right or wrong, many people in this country still associate with. Someone please help me find my pitchfork; I haven't actually been able to locate it since we hunted down Kony back in 2012.

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It's completely wrong, as wrong as a Nazi flag or worse. People who want to fly it should stay the fuck out of Boston.

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Ignorant anti-free speech fascists like you should stay the hell out of America, but even nitwits like you are allowed a voice.

The civil war was always more complicated than slavery, but even if it weren't, I can't see why reenactors shouldn't use the same flags as the units they portray.

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Let them whoop and holler and fly their stars-and-bars all they want south of the Mason-Dixon line (and they do, even on July 4).

In Boston, which was the home of the anti-slavery movement, a state represented in the Senate by a man nearly beaten to death by a Southern goon, it's an offensive symbol of a brutal regime responsible for the enslavement of millions of people and more American battle deaths than any other - a regime that "Southern heritage" fans seem to keep forgetting lost.

I'm sure American soldiers picked up plenty of Nazi flags in the march to Berlin, but you don't see any veterans groups flying them in parades. This is really no different.

And it doesn't really matter how the stars and bars didn't start as a symbol of that regime. It ended up as it, and it's used as a symbol of it today - again, rather like the swastika, which existed for thousands of years before the Nazis, but for which there are very good reasons not to fly anymore.

Also, you might want to look up some definitions of "free speech." Nobody's ripping flags out of people's hands; people who are offended have as much a right to complain as people who look wistfully back at the antebellum South.

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Adam,
I am a Filipino, I sought out a "Rising Sun" flag when I lived in Japan. Dozens in my family were Massacred by them; but you know what? Dozens more were massacred by Americans 50 years earlier. I fly an American flag proudly (I was born and raised here), I cherished my Japanese flag as a reminder of what my people overcame to allow my comfortable life now, and I fly my Filipino flag too. The horrors of History have no way of judiciously designating which monster future generations must revile the most - we Americans are fixed on Hitler and it is with great fear and hatred that we trot out the "if this were a Nazi symbol" argument so quickly that really, no discussion can escape it. While the Confederate Flag offends you and your memory of Boston as the home of anti-slavery, it is not the only flag flown at that parade that symbolizes murder and oppression to some of us.

I attended college in Kentucky and travel extensively through the South. They understandably present their Confederate ancestors not as a "brutal regime" but as wealthy, slave owners trying to protect the wealth and independence of their region, a feeling that remains today. I took offense to the idea of a Confederate Flag and watched it disappear post 9-11 then pop up more and more post-Obama. I am not going to downplay the origins of the flag, but cannot compare it by a long mile to Neo-Nazis parading in Boston. It is simply not fair. If we are to reduce our brothers and sisters by the flag that flew over the bed they were born in, then we have adopted the eyes by which your nightmares of Nazi Germany are governed. Those Southerners are your countrymen, and their rejection of a moral superiority that a city like Boston should not hold over S. Carolina rings true, esp. when we know that this home of anti-slavery has also been the home of mind boggling racism from the founding of the City on the Hill to No Irish to present day.

And now, soap box in hand, I will ride off into the sunset like Shane....

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I'm not arguing that Boston is without sin. Winthrop's "City on a Hill" was a call for religious exclusion, Quakers were executed for being Quakers, and the reason we had a Great Molasses Flood goes back to the days when Boston played such a prominent role in the Triangular Trade that brought so many slaves to North America (and let's not forget what led to 1974).

That having been said, I am surprised that somebody who did grow up in a country that has known its own share of colonization and misery at the hands of foreign countries can look at what the South was and say we're just dealing with "their rejection of a moral superiority that a city like Boston should not hold over S. Carolina." Really? Have you really read up on what American slavery was like?

And that having been said, I don't think white Southerners flying confederate flags is simply harkening back to a kinder, gentler time, a mourning for a grand life that was simply lost, a way of life that was simply different from that in the North . It is a giant FU to the idea of a United States in general, of a United States of equal opportunity for all in particular. And yes, I said white Southerners. Black southerners do not fly the stars and bars. You might ask them why.

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Adam,
I invoked my heritage to point out that if we were to see the world as remainders of all our past failures and abuses, not many blacks, Irish, Jews, Vietnamese, or others would want to fly the Stars and Stripes, the Union Jack, or pretty much any flag. The Confederate flag bugged me when I first got to college, and I was puzzled why so many vestiges of it were allowed on cars, stickers, buttons etc worn by people of all ages. I wondered what my black (Southern) classmates thought about this, and I realized they judged people by their actions, their words, and their family- not from afar with an iPhone.

Preach all you'd like about slavery and I will never disagree, but don't fool yourself into thinking we are better off censoring a flag. We are better off debating about the issues underneath our knee jerk reactions. I strongly doubt you really think the members of the S. Carolina group are honoring slavery.Up north we like to believe Southerners don't take ownership of their past. But, they feel the stain of slavery, too; they do not hide it behind a flag and condemn the flag. They live with it and the sins of recent memory like the Jim Crow era and separate but equal. In their eyes, this makes them resent the portrayal Northerners have established in the National memory. That isn't my opinion, but it an opinion nonetheless.

Don't censor flags. Slavery = still bad. The end

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The flag (and the war) symboloizes different things to different people. I think Ira Glass explained it well: http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/68/transcript

In the north the confederate flag generally sends a message of some type of crypto-neo-Naziism. In the South it's often shown as a symbol of sticking-it-to-the-man.

If you see a black person flying it, you can assume they're hipsters.

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Seems like, according to history, that we were pretty anti-slavery.

BUT according to a certain court case, the judge didn't agree with us...right in Boston.

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most believe it to be.

However, I always chuckle when folks, like yourself, say the civil war was more complicated than slavery. Actually, slavery was a big portion of what was in play as the stupid southerners did not want to readily give up their, ahem "institution" of keeping fellow human beings enslaved (beaten, tortured, maimed, et. al.)

Thus the confederate flag and all it connotes is a symbol of that lovely period in our US history and its aftermath (I think it was also popular with fun groups like the KKK). Like a Nazi flag, it is a symbol that should be not be flown or carried unless you are participating as a WWII German or southern soldier in historic reenactments.

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... but the North's ability to block any further _expansion_ of slavery into the territories that would soon become states -- and the South's need to expamd its market for slave selling (as the South's poor agricultural practices were leading to soil exhaustion in many parts of the South, while they continued to produce lots of brand new baby slaves).

Given the way the Constitution was written, the free states probably could not have managed to abolish slavery in the existing slave states for at least a century, But the South wanted more slave states (and territories) and had a grand plan for taking overmost of the Carribean , Central America and (at least) the northern tier of countries in South America. They also expected that their (planned) total control of the Mississippi would cause most of the midwestern states to ultimately abandon the Union and join the Confederacy -- leaving only New York and New England as the last vestige of "the North".

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that slavery, in regards to its expansion, was indeed an issue, no?

There was tension between the North and the South in regards to whether prospective new states in the Union would be slave holding or not. I can't comment on how long it would of taken to make human bondage in this country disappear without the Civil War but the south pushed the issue by starting the war and we all know the result.

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You can take the boy out of Oklahoma, but you can't take Oklahoma out of the boy. The perspective a person gets growing up in a place once in the crosshairs of slaver expansion is naturally different from the perspective gained from growing up in the area where abolitionism came about.

I can well understand that this is a perspective they might teach there - Indian Territory was also slave territory, and it suffered greatly during the war. It's true that expansion was a very sticky matter, hence the Missouri Compromise that gave us (or took away from us?) Maine. The compromise line was a temporary kludge, seen as untenable by the Founding Fathers themselves, and the only final solution was the unification of the country and the country's law through universal abolition of slavery.

The foreign expansionist goals of the slavers don't get a lot of airtime up here. William Walker notwithstanding, it's not clear they were anything but lunacy, and neither is it clear they played a role in accelerating the war for America.

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There was a lot of internecine warfare within what is now Oklahoma. Every major tribe split on the ssue of slavery (and secession), typically with the most conservative members opposing slavery and the most "modern" ones favoring slavery (and owning slaves).

Of course the war was about slavery -- my point was just that it was not about the abolition of slavery (something most Northerners wouldn't have spent a drop of blood -- or a penny -- to accomplish -- prior to the Confederacy's beginning of hostilities). Rather, it was about the South's belief that a weak new Northern leader like Lincoln (so they thought) gave them the perfect opportunity to begin their quest to obtain more territory, with only ineffective opposition. They were getting very annoyed that the majority of inhabitants in the various Western territories were voting against allowing slavery. So much for the South's current battle cry for "states rights". No, the war was not about the ending of slavery, but about the South's forcible attempt to ensure that slavery would expand, even though it meant treasonous demolition of the country they belonged to.

And no, this perspective on the Civil War was NOT taught in Oklahoma -- even back n the 50s and 60s, before it became a de facto part of the new (old) South. (It was a mix of Midwest, West and South in my day).

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Not quite. The problem was not that slave states wanted an expansion of slavery. Slavers in North Carolina didn't care if anyone in Kansas owned slaves or not. They just didn't want an expansion of non-slave states that would change the balance in Congress. US history in the 1850s is full of weird compromises that kept the republic 50-50 slave and free states.

Since the northern states were growing in population, the solution for the South was to secede and form their own country. Then the northern states could expand all they want without dominating the southern states.

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... raising and selling slaves was potentially more profitable than selling cotton (especially when one's soil was near-exhausted due to bad agricultural methods -- most true in Alabama and Mississippi). And conquering a good chunk of the Caribbean and Latin America would have opened up lots of new markets. While the Western US may not have been as promising in terms of slave-powered plantation potential, it still had _some_ potential as a market for slaves.

The US Constitution was set up to protect the interests of slave holders -- slavery was not going to go away anytime soon -- no matter what happened to Kansas (in terms of slave vs. free state). The biggest need was to expand the territory into which slaves could be used.

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Please tell me how it could be worse than flying a nazi flag....

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Because Germany at least doesn't have the gall to hang swastikas outside state government buildings in the 21st century. They disavowed and apologized for the entire era of their history, because they're ashamed by it. Which is what the South should be doing.

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Still not even close to the same thing. If your problem is with slavery, then you should also have an issue with flying the American flag too.

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"The Confederate States of America (1861-1865): Not As Bad as Nazi Germany"

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"The United States of America (1776 - ): Only completely eradicated the indigenous population of one continent." People, or country's in glass houses really shouldn't throw stones.

At the end of the day it's just a flag. There are still people enslaved in parts of the world today, but no one on here really gives a shit about slavery, they just want something to get worked up about.

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They're not eradicated. Open your jaundiced eyes. Your view of history is incomplete, and just flat out wrong: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Indian_reservations_in_the_United_S...

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Just because not every single Native American was killed, doesn't mean they weren't stripped of their land, massacred and the remaining forced to move to tiny reservations.

If you don't think that they were wronged, then give me your address, I'm moving into your house. Don't worry though, I'll give you a corner of the yard for you to hang out in.

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... at the National Museum of the American Indian is this pertinent (and excellent) special exhibit:

http://www.nmai.si.edu/explore/exhibitions/item/?id=934

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Please don't redefine what eradication means. In that way, you are belittling the experience of every American Indian and other American indigenous that lived, and still live, in the last 520 odd years.

I think they were wronged, in case it isn't clear.

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It's hypocritical to condemn one piece of cloth and turn around and salute another with an equally dark past. I'm not saying the stars and bars should be displayed anywhere, but American's sure do have a slippery memory when it comes to atrocities committed under the stars and stripes.

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The US flag carries some serious baggage, sure, and I despise those who loudly wave it (or god help us, wear it as a t-shirt) without acknowledging that, but it's also the flag of Iwo Jima, D-Day and the moon landing. When exactly did the Confederacy put *any* positive points up on the scoreboard?

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...don't use big words like "eradicated" when you clearly don't know what they mean, mmmkay?

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to do away with as completely as if by pulling up by the roots

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/eradicate

Now, if you had said, "the US tried really really hard to eradicate most of the indigenous population of our part of the continent" you would have been correct.

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I'm no expert, but weren't the majority of Native people in New England killed by epidemic diseases rather than government policies? Not that there was a "US" at the time, anyway.

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But we did plenty of wholesale slaughtering in colonial New England. For instance:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mystic_massacre

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About twenty years ago a white frosh at Harvard thought it would be fun to hang a Confederate flag from her dorm window. A black frosh at Harvard was offended, and thought it would be a good protest to hang a Nazi flag out of her dorm window.

It quickly became apparent that displaying a Nazi flag in Harvard Yard is way worse than displaying a Confederate flag.

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When you compare something to the Nazi's you automatically lose.

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... that says that people citing Godwin's Law will misunderstand it?

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Sorry, I don't understand the massage reference. Could you please explain? Because it sounds a bit like you're implying that it was ridiculous that she'd be upset by that, and the mention of a massage - to which she didn't herself allude - sounds like you're working overtime to paint her as trifling and indulgent. I do hope I'm wrong. Please elaborate.

And so long as I'm asking for explanations, I'd be interested in what you think the 'rightly' of that 'rightly or wrongly' would look like. I can't imagine a compelling, or even passably rational, 'right' reason one would identify with that symbol of slavery.

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Maybe because it's not a symbol of slavery to everyone?

Maybe because you belonged to one of the American military units who have flown it in every war since?

I can think of a lot of maybes, but please go on being a knee-jerk reactionary unable to imagine any viewpoint but his own. Just do it at 4chan or some other home for trolls.

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Maybe because it's not a symbol of slavery to everyone?

It is a symbol of treason.

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Skynyrd

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Is the Star Spangled Banner not a song about treason and rebellion?

Oh wait, we won that war. I guess that makes it not treasonous.

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We won that war. And the Civil War.

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Written during the War of 1812. A song about a fort in Baltimore surviving a night of barrage by the British, who we had been separated from for decades at the time. Not sure how you get treason and rebellion there.

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... any old stupid trash is good enough to spout.

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To the British (and to the Tories), our founding fathers were all traitors. To the British, the colonies were in rebellion. It's perfectly fair and correct for them to characterize history that way. George Washington committed treason agains the Crown. Fine. You know what, he's not buried in Britain. He's not honored in Britain, and no Briton should be expected to honor him.

The difference is that Lee and the Confederacy committed treason against the United States of America. No citizen of the United States of America should honor him for that.

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Except we didn't win the War of 1812.

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Yes, my crazy reactionary brain will go associating the confederate flag with slavery. Silly little me. I'll go sit quietly in the corner while the real intellects scuttle about trying to disconnect the avowed symbol of the slave-owning American South from racism and all other ugliness.

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Anybody who displays a Confederate battle flag in Massachusetts is proclaiming their asshole racism, not any love of American history. No matter how many hairs are split trying to prove the Civil War wasn't about racism, that flag is always going to be about it, and the farther it travels from the onetime CSA, the more clearly a symbol of racism it is.

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She mentions the massage in a follow up tweet, I'm not painting her as anything. Also there were many more differences between the north and the south besides slavery, and this is one of the reasons many southerners still associate with the flag.

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Jim Crow laws, vagrancy laws (Southern Black Codes), and then denying the freed slaves their constitutional right to vote and...

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I thought of Monty Python. As in "And now, a massage from the Swedish Prime Minister."

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Will Gov. Baker be issuing a comment on the Confederate flag controversy?
https://twitter.com/KarynPolito/status/605533664722710529

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I wonder if they would have the nerve to troop that slaver's rag past the memorial to the 54th? What's up with no one from the Ancient Order stepping up and telling them not to fly that thing? I gotta be honest, there's something a little weird about your hardcore reenactor types anyways.

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his flag is NOT being carried by the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company but is being carried by a historic organization from Georgia. They come to Boston every year as many other historic chartered military organizations do.

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Are we in effect condoning, even lauding the reasons that organization came to fly that flag in the first place?

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half POGS.

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....

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Just like the swastika is part of GERMAN history.

What's your point, again?

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Invincible in peace. Invisible in war.

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someone should just ask the event organizers directly?

C'mon, Adam, commit an act of journalism!

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They needed somewhere to point the cannon?

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