I live in Upstate New York. A family down the road from me decided to use their children’s side walk chalk to draw a four foot by six foot Confederate flag on the road on Easter Sunday. These same people had a Confederate flag that said “Come and Take It” and had a AR-15 on it. That flag thankfully disappeared after Charlottesville, but it seems their racism hasn’t.
The rain has since washed it away. But I’m not really sure what to do with this. This is Trump country, I’m not in any denial of where I live. There are police lives matter flags all over, faded Trump banners and anti gun reform signs on many homes.
It wasn’t like this when I was a kid, it’s always been generically rural mentalities but not aggressively racist. Upstate NY has a deep connection with abolitionism – there’s a statue to an escaped slave in downtown Syracuse. It’s there to celebrate the cities anti-slavery history as being a prominent stop along the underground railroad. ‘Jerry’s Rescue‘ remembers the time that people around Syracuse rallied and broke a slave out of prison and got him to Canada to freedom. That was 1851, but it seems that we’ve lost a lot along the way.
There’s no escape it seems from what this country has always been.