www.whyville.net Feb 20, 2003 Weekly Issue

Times Writer

Confederate Flags in Whyville? You Decide!

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Uncle Sam needs you! Well maybe not Uncle Sam, but Akbar certainly does!

In the future, a citywide vote will be held in Whyville, because Akbar is in a bit of a sticky situation and he needs your help! You can make your opinion count, but it's important to be educated on the issue first, which is exactly why you're reading this article.

So, what's the big vote about? Confederate flags!

For those of you who don't know what a Confederate flag is (like I didn't!), it was a series of flags that were used by the Southern states during the Civil War. As you probably know, it was those states which supported slavery, so it's understandable why some people are offended by these flags.

But why is this a problem for Whyville? Why can't Akbar just reject them if some people are offended? Well, as City Hall has said, "We accept flags of all countries, as you've seen, but we're not sure about Confederate flags, because if you look them up on the web, they are often associated with racist groups. On the other hand, just because you're from the Southern states of the U.S. and feel a cultural and historical affinity for the Confederate flag does not make you automatically a racist."

Before this month's Senate meeting, I did some canvassing to see how citizens felt about this issue. Most of the people I talked to said the flags shouldn't be accepted, but then nearly half of the people at the Senate meeting said that Akbar should them accept them. Since this didn't help City Hall choose, we've decided to have a big citywide vote! Do you think Akbar should accept Confederate flags?

If you're still not sure, see if you agree with what some of Whyville's citizens had to say!

"After thinking about it, I've decided that Confederate Flags should be allowed. The Confederate was a set of states that tried to withdraw from the Union during the Civil War. Many of the people in the Confederate were racist, but certainly not all of them. The flag itself is associated with a region, not a set of beliefs. Any racist behavior, comments, or actions should be punished, and any parts with "racist" names should not be permitted, but I think it would be unfair of us to ban the flag itself." - JasmineK

"How many people will wear this item for reasons that are unselfish or racist? I can almost predict the ratio will show a small scale of honest citizens.... I don't think I want to bring in anything that could possibly increase the 'not so nice' comments that are already overinhabiting Whyville. And what about those people whose ancestors were slaves? Wouldn't they be offended by this flag?" -Deriko

"Well first off, it is still flown in the south at the same height as the state flag. I really don't agree with it, but if you want to go by the U.S., then people have a freedom to express themselves." -Amazing

"I think that Akbar's shouldn't put them in because even though the people who made these in the Face Factory probably mean no harm to the Whyville society, some people may buy them and use them against the portion of the black and tan Whyvillians." - Hailey76

So there you have it; both points of view on this issue. If you're still a little unsure, you can ask yourself what City Hall asked the citizens who attended the senate meeting; do you think there will be more fighting in Whyville if Akbar accepts these flags? Exercise your right to vote and tell City Hall what you think!

Hold on Sailor.


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