Playing Doctor




Initial Visit?

Thursday, February 10

A Lid For Every Pot Calling the Kettle

Last week, one of the OB/GYN residents was telling me about a patient of hers that lived ‘on the northside.’

The Northside, for those of you who might need a refresher on sections of this town, is the section that was not highlighted on the Superbowl map of ‘places of interest.’ Now, in most major US cities, that is the section of town that realtors euphemistically—and illegally—refer to as ‘a little dark.’ But here it’s the section of town that is white, poor, and has a propensity for displaying their white supremacy flags Confederate flags.

Her patient was telling her to avoid that part of town. She did not spell it out, but she was giving her that advice because the resident was racially mixed.

“I don’t think its right, the way everyone just displays their Confederate flags all over the place,” the patient said. “They should display them inside, like I do with mine.”



Hearing this gave me an idea.

People who display white supremacy flags Confederate flags have their little catch phrase “Heritage not hate,” which I find a bit self-consciously naive, as they are well aware that an important part of the heritage of the confederacy was that whole slavery thing. (Some try to minimize the importance of slavery, but that’s hogwash. The birth of the Republican Party was formed by uniting the disparate anti-slavery parties in the US. Only the formation of the national treasury comes close to having the same sustained argument in domestic policy in the first 100 years of our nation’s history and everyone knows it.)

Anyway, there is still a movement requesting reparations for slavery. A law student recently filed a suit in federal court after discovering evidence that Aetna and the railroad company CSX (whose headquarters are here) directly profited from the sale of slaves. The suit estimates slaves performed as much as $40 million worth of unpaid labor between 1790 and 1860. The current value of that labor could be as high as $1.4 trillion. I don’t know how they will estimate how much should be billed to Aetna and CSX, but I think I may have a better idea.

Most people who dismiss the idea of slave reparations do so with the argument that slavery ended nearly 150 years ago and that people should ‘just get over it.’ Curiously, I think we have a match of people who think that the Confederacy has importance in modern day life.

We have people who are eager to claim their heritage of the Confederacy, and people who are looking for its inheritors. I am surprised no one has thought of this before.

I propose we simply trademark the white supremacy flags Confederate flag, and all proceeds go to a Reparations Fund.

All the Bumper Stickers, T-shirts, Beer Cozies, T-Shirts, Caps, Flags, T-Shirts, Handkerchiefs, T-Shirts, and Hunting Knives bearing the image of the Confederate flag® would each contribute a few dollars to the Slave Reparations Fund. The State of Mississippi would also contribute quite a bit, as their State flag still use the—newly copyrighted—Confederate flag®. The more Heritage, the more money for Reparations.

They could perhaps meet with Bad Boy Records, which has a very aggressive anti-piracy department, to ensure that no unlicensed merchandise is sold.

Not even at the Daytona 500.

3 Comments:

2/10/2005
Blogger Captain 43 writes:

you forgot hoods and capes bearing the image of the Confederate flag®

 


2/10/2005
Anonymous Anonymous writes:

I was born and raised in Georgia and have always been frustrated with people claiming that the flag is our heritage. The confederate flag wasn't adopted as our state flag until the 1960s as a response to the anti-segregation laws. I think your plan is genius. My landlord could feed a family for a year with all the stuff he buys. We even have a lovely flag in our yard. My puerto rican room mate's black boyfriend loves it.

Sarah

 


2/11/2005
Anonymous Anonymous writes:

I love it! As an Alabamian I think this is brilliant! It would either make people stop buying the flags/merchandise ("I ain't supportin' dem") which would lower the racism quotient, or provide direct benefit to the African American population.

 


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