While Americans across the fruited plain are firing up their barbecues for hamburgers, hot dogs, ribs and steaks a Florida man is calling for something else to be torched – the Confederate flag. On the day that we honor our war dead, John Sims of Sarasota is using the occasion to deliver a blow to the specter of racism by promoting nationwide burnings of the beloved symbol of Dixieland. It has become politically fashionable to defile the standard of the Confederacy ever since the deranged little fiend Dylann Roof took it upon himself to murder nine African American churchgoers in cold blood last summer, setting off a wave of revulsion and outrage. So it comes as no surprise given our national climate of umbrage over real and perceived racism to see a publicity seeking blacktivist looking to get attention with his Memorial Day BurnandBury campaign.
Liberal website Think Progress is touting Sims’ efforts in the article “A New Memorial Day Tradition — Burning The Confederate Flag”:
Memorial Day, officially a day to honor Americans who died in war, has more broadly come to symbolize the unofficial start of summer. Many Americans will take a trip to the beach, barbeque or just enjoy a day off from work.
Now there is an effort to create a new tradition — burning the Confederate flag.
The movement is being led by John Sims, an artist in Sarasota, Florida. Sims started the initiative last year when he organized confederate flag burnings in 13 cities across the South.
The events were relatively small but generated fierce opposition from groups like the Sons of Confederate Veterans and significant media attention.
This year, Sims is upping the ante. One factor that reduced participation, he says, was that many people who were interested did not want to go out and purchase a Confederate flag. This year he’s created a downloadable “Burn and Bury” kits that allows people to print out their own Confederate flag at home, suitable for burning.
Sims will also be broadcasting this year’s activities live online.
The artist/activist has referred to the flag as “the N-word on a pole” and told Think Progress that “to deny this flag’s connection to American white supremacy and fear of the loss of white privilege is insane”. While he lacks the name recognition enjoyed by some of the more prominent racism racketeers, it may be that with this idea that Mr. Sims is an up and comer in the movement. While it remains to be seen as to whether he will get much attention nationally the effort is certainly inflammatory – unnecessarily so and so over the top that it will do as much damage to his own cause as win support.
While the campaign isn’t going to sit well with the descendants of southern folks who will see his flag burning as akin to spitting on the graves of their ancestors who fought for a cause that they very likely believed was a noble one, it won’t deter those who are waging war against “white privilege” which is just about as racist a term that “nigger” is. The live broadcasts were to commence at 2 PM EST.