Les Kinsolving hosts a daily talk show for WCBM in Baltimore. His radio commentaries are syndicated nationally. His show can be heard on the Internet 9-11 p.m. Eastern each weekday. Before going into broadcasting, Kinsolving was a newspaper reporter and columnist – twice nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for his commentary. Kinsolving's maverick reporting style is chronicled in a book written by his daughter, Kathleen Kinsolving, titled, "Gadfly."More ↓Less ↑
This is the 150-year anniversary of the Civil War, also called “War Between the States” and “War of the Rebellion” – as well as “War of Northern Aggression.”
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, or NAACP, has decided to observe this anniversary by issuing a demand that the state of South Carolina remove the Confederate battle flag from the north end of the state house in Columbia.
Reuters and Fox News reported:
“Speaking to a crowd at a NAACP national conference in Los Angeles, NAACP President Benjamin Jealous attempted to shame South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley into removing the flag by comparing African-American slavery to oppression Haley’s ancestors in India faced under British rule.
“Perhaps one of the most perplexing examples of the contradictions of this moment in history is that Nikki Haley, South Carolina’s first governor of color, continues to fly the Confederate flag in front of her state’s capitol. Given the similarities between our struggle to end slavery and segregation and her ancestors’ struggle to end British colonialism and oppression in India, my question to Gov. Haley is one that Dr. King often asked himself: ‘What would Gandhi do?’ Jealous said.
“The flag has been at the north end of the state house since 2000. It was moved there after legislation passed in response to protests and an NAACP boycott of the state over the flag’s position atop the dome on the state house, where it was placed in 1962 by an all-white South Carolina Legislature.
“Haley was born in South Carolina, and her spokesperson said the decision lies with the people of the Palmetto State.
“‘More than a decade ago under the leadership of the Democratic governor, South Carolinians, Republican and Democrat, black and white, came to a compromise position on the Confederate flag,’ said Haley Press Secretary Rob Godfrey.
“‘Many people were uncomfortable with that compromise, but it addressed a sensitive subject in a way that South Carolina as a whole could accept. We don’t expect people from outside of the state to understand that dynamic, but revisiting that issue is not part of the governor’s agenda,’ Godfrey said.
“The NAACP boycott remains in place as a protest to the decision to keep the flag beside a monument honoring fallen Confederate soldiers. Opponents say the flag should be removed completely from state house grounds because it represents slavery and white supremacy.
“The National Collegiate Athletic Association has also refused to hold any tournaments in the state since 2001 as long as the Confederate flag continues to fly there.
“But others say the flag is a reminder of an important part of South Carolina’s history, not to mention that it doesn’t violate any laws.
“‘There’s nothing more sacred in the country than the First Amendment. If someone wants to raise that flag then they have the First Amendment right to do so,’ said attorney Richard Roth of the Roth Law Firm in New York City.
“Roth, who has argued several First Amendment cases before the federal courts, noted that South Carolina is the only state with any legal limitation on flying the Confederate flag.
“‘It may not be good for business and it may not be good for general character and reputation, but legally you have every right to fly any flag,’ said Roth.”
If South Carolina ever decides to dishonor the memory of so many of its men who died in what might well be termed the Second American Revolution – and if Mississippi ever yields to similar pressure to remove the Confederate battle flag from its state flag – can we imagine the next demands of the frequently incredible NAACP (which remains tongue-tied at the scandalous racial segregation now practiced by the Congressional Black Caucus)?
Think of the possibility that the NAACP might demand the name of the capital city of Washington be changed because the father of our country was a slave owner.
Think of the NAACP demanding that the Washington Monument be renamed – in honor of John Brown. And further demanding that the name of our nation’s capital be changed from Washington to Nat Turner City, and the state of Washington to the state of Malcolm X.
There would, of course, also be a need to remove the name and photograph of Gen. and President Ulysses Grant from our currency, for he too was a slave owner, as was Mrs. Grant, who, with her two slaves, was very nearly captured by Confederate cavalry.