Council’s decision on flag the right one

Published 10:35 pm Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Recently, the LaGrange City Council voted to place a historic marker next to the Stonewall Jackson Cemetery and created a city policy to only allow city, state and federal flags to fly on city properties. The Confederate flag was replaced by an official Georgia flag.

Supporters of the confederate flag contend it is historically significant as a memorial to Confederate soldiers who died while fighting for the South, while critics say it promotes racism.

I was shocked when Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said the flag “continues to be a painful reminder of racial oppression to many” and that “the time for a state to fly it has long since passed.”

It is truly difficult for some people to understand why a piece of cloth can stir the angry emotions of so many to the extent that it can cause terror in those who do not embrace or submit to the ideology in which it was created.

Everyone is familiar with the swastika. Most assume that it was Adolf Hitler’s regime that created it. Not true. The broken cross has been discovered in caves and in other such places to include China, long before it became a symbol of fear. It was actually, not initially associated with evil, but with good luck.

The swastika insignia on a flag, even today, causes most Jews to rally their forces in order to ensure that it will never again be accorded the status it once had under Hitler.

Voters who went to the polls in 2002, gave popular Roy Barnes the boot. They were outraged that he had changed the state’s confederate flag. Cecil Alexander, a prominent Atlanta architect at the time, was key to the design of a new flag for Georgia under Barnes. Mr. Alexander, who is Jewish, minimized the confederate battle insignia (southern cross) on the flag.

There are some obvious fallacies relating to the confederate flag. It was not the national flag of the confederacy. The confederacy changed its flag three times during the course of the Civil War.

Is the name, Denmark Groover familiar to you?

If you like or dislike the flag, you should at least be familiar with Groover’s contribution to the flag issue. He was the Georgia floor leader under Gov. Marvin Griffin, who ran for office as a staunch segregationist.

Groover in 1956, sponsored the legislation to incorporate the southern cross into the state’s flag. He and other Georgia legislators supported the addition of the symbol as a protest against federal integration orders.

You know what? In 2001, 45 years later, Groover again, stepped into the flag controversy. This time, however, his tune was different. He sang to all who would listen that the confederate flag was divisive and should be taken down.

What do you think?

Dr. Glenn Dowell is an author and columnist who currently lives in Jonesboro, Georgia. He has been a guest speaker on major college campuses, including having appeared on TV programs such as the Oprah Winfrey Show. He may be reached at