By Ken Reed

South Carolina remains in the Stone Age as evidenced by the fact the Confederate flag continues to fly on the Statehouse grounds. This disturbing reality was brought to light again following the despicable killings of nine African Americans at a Charleston, S.C. church. The murder suspect is Dylann Roof, a white supremacist.

The Confederate flag, even if it has redeeming qualities to some people, is tied to a racist past. Fortunately, Republican South Carolina governor Nikki Haley acknowledged that fact on Monday in calling for the removal of the Confederate flag from the Statehouse.

“It’s time to move the flag from the Capital grounds,” said Haley. “On matters of race, South Carolina has a tough history. We don’t need reminders.”

Haley made the right call but the issue is far from over. South Carolina lawmakers have to take action to make it happen. Haley threatened to call state legislators back for a special session on the topic this summer. Removing the Confederate flag won’t come easy. Flying the flag on Capital grounds retains plenty of political support in South Carolina.

At the very least, the Confederate flag is an extremely divisive symbol that feeds racial tension. It shouldn’t be formally supported by the state of South Carolina.

Due to the power of sport in our culture and the visibility and impact of sports teams on the conscience of society, big-time sports organizations can be a powerful influence on this issue if they come out for the removal of the Confederate flag.

University of South Carolina athletics director made a step in that direction when he tweeted, “It’s time to remove the flag. We are ONE!!” referring to the Confederate flag flown at the state capital in Columbia, South Carolina.

The rest of Sportsworld should follow his lead.

Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans


Comments are closed.

Set your Twitter account name in your settings to use the TwitterBar Section.