Black University of South Carolina student Byron Thomas has become somewhat known for his passionate defense of the Confederate Flag and its use as the flag within the state. Thomas doesn’t think the flag represents the state’s well-documented racist past and doesn’t want to see it removed despite recent developments.
Thomas, who has been making YouTube videos for years about the Confederate Flag and his supporting views, was a guest on CNN and spoke with host Hal Gorani. Gorani challenged Thomas stances, making certain to mention not only the flag’s ties to slavery but the fact alleged Mother Emanuel AME Church shooter Dylann Roof displayed the flag on his website.
Thomas, who hangs the flag in his home, explained that his support comes by way of an ancestor who fought in the Confederate Army and that the Confederacy actually awarded its Black soldiers pensions after the war in its losing effort.
While that certainly seems noble, someone needs to let young Thomas know that long after the Union Army defeated the Southern forces, many there didn’t want to do away with the practice of slavery. Then the divisive Jim Crow segregation laws came forth and upended any hope of true racial harmony.
Somewhere, we believe Thomas has a point buried under his well-stated but somehow majorly-flawed reasoning. From this standpoint, it looks like Thomas is blind to history and facts.
Check out the video from CNN below.