Thursday, February 5, 2015

Belated Flagging Report

Saturday's flagging (January 31) was one of the best yet, despite somewhat sparse foot traffic on the sidewalk.

We flagged with a First National and a battle flag, which proved to be great for illustration purposes ("The County Commissioners voted to take down all the historic flags except the US flag, just to remove that one..." indicating the the battle flag, "when all they had to do was replace it with this one," indicating the Stars and Bars. "That's what the city did fifteen years ago.")

For only the second time since we've been flagging, we had a passerby who disagreed and said no flags of the Confederacy should fly today. When he said, "It's associated with slavery and racism," and I said, "Well, that depends on who's doing the associating." He said most Americans associate it that way, and I replied that reputable polls indicate that most Americans have no opinion about it. He apparently didn't want to hear more, as he strolled away at that point.

(Google Images)
One young father pushing a baby carriage posed it next to one of the cannons in front of the courthouse, adjacent to the historic clock, and took several photos. Afterward, he came to us, curious about our presence in front of the county complex.

Using the two flags snapping in the breeze, we informed him about the county's recent decision. He asked what the two flags were, and which other flags had been removed. 

Whether a new resident or visitor, he was unfamiliar with the history of Pensacola, as it is illustrated by the Five Flags displays. He asked several questions about the countries that governed Pensacola during is history. I also gave him a quick recap of the city's decision back in the late 1940s to combine history and tourism in the Fiesta of Five Flags. He was very polite and thanked us, and wished us luck in getting the flags returned to the civic center display.

Another young man made a point of coming up to us to shake our hands and thank us for publicly supporting the area's history, heritage and tradition. He said he regretted that he had no cash on him to contribute to our effort, but we assured him his verbal support and encouragement were more than sufficient substitutes.

A senior lady from Milton, in next-door Santa Rosa County, said she wholeheartedly supports returning the flags to the display. She was very knowledgeable about area history, and wished us success in our efforts.

Due to inclement weather, there was no flagging on Wednesday, February 4, but Saturday looks great for a sojourn on the sidewalk! We encourage anyone who supports our city and county's history and heritage to join us from 1 to 3 at the corner of Palafox Place and Government Street. (On-street parking is free on Saturdays, folks!)

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