A sea of red, white, and blue filled the front of the Gaston County Courthouse today, but it was not because of the American Flag as we know it. Instead, it was the confederate flag that more than 100 folks brought with them as they defended their right to fly the flag.
“We're here today because we’re proud of our confederate ancestry, proud of our heritage,” said Bill Starnes of Sons of Confederate Veterans. The group organized the rally, defending their right to fly the confederate flag. They say it represents an important part of history that is often not told truthfully.
“Our ancestors were not traders and they're not trying to overthrow the government were simply voluntarily leaving the union they hadn't voluntarily joined,” said
Independent presidential candidate Samm Tittle joined in on the rally, agreeing that it’s not racist, far from it.
“It's not racist. It's a piece of material. It’s colors,” she said. “What we’ve got is an American Heritage that's been taken down.”
It was taken down shortly after the mass shooting in a black church last June.
“They spin this whole thing out of control like this was all an inspired act because of my heritage,” said Creightlon Lovelace of Sons of Confederate Veterans.
“It's part of our duties as Southerners and as family members of people who served the Confederate states of America to take a stand and let our voices be heard.”