It has no right to fly in front of a courtroom, which is supposed to represent all the people, not just those with Confederate heritage.The major problem with this line of reasoning is that it sees Confederate flags as a "niche", or a symbol of a few partisans. It is a complete misunderstanding to classify Confederate flags as representing an exclusive group (Confederate descendants or "those with Confederate heritage," the SCV, or whoever) or organizations that have misused the banners.
The Confederate Battle flag, rightly, is associated with slavery and in our own times with racism. It has no business whatsoever to be flown at a public building.
These buildings and public spaces are for us as a society, not for our niches. I don’t demand, nor would I want to see, the so-called African-American flag, the Cherokee flag, a pentagram-emblazoned banner, a Vodou (sic) banner or the rainbow flag (all of which are meaningful to me in one way or another) displayed in this manner. To demand such would not be right, and neither are the demands of these apologists.
Confederate flags can certainly be flown in public places in particular states -- those that were part of the Confederate States of America. In this context the flag doesn't "represent" anybody; it identifies the nation of which a state and its counties and municipalities were a part at one time in their history. It goes without saying that a Confederate flag does not belong in front of, say, the state house of Montana or a courthouse in Oregon, as these were not member states in the Confederacy.
The so-called African-American flag, the Cherokee flag, a pentagram-emblazoned banner, a Vodou (sic) banner or the rainbow flag were never elements of the flag of a sovereign nation that its constituent states recognized and flew. One wonder how hard it is to grasp such a simple but crucial fact.
There is nothing wrong with official buildings, from state capitols to city halls, to courthouses and other official property, displaying a Confederate flag to acknowledge that the Confederacy was once their official national government. Many states fly on public property the flags of other governments they have been a party to during their history. In my town, five such flags represent the historical countries/governments to which Pensacola has belonged. In these applications, the proper Confederate flag would be the third national, the political flag of the CSA.
In public and private parks commemorating Confederate soldiers and cemeteries where they rest, the flag chosen by Confederate veterans themselves to represent them and honor their service and sacrifice, is the rectangular battle flag -- the Southern cross. As it is not a political flag of a historic government, it can and should be flown above Confederate cemeteries and memorials in states inside and outside of the old Confederacy.
Of course, there will be those who refuse to see the difference between the official flag of a nation of which a state once was a part and, say, the rainbow flag. Sad commentary on the state of propagandistic education in the USA.
Photo by C. Ward