Seems that some Confederate heritage advocates have decided that Memphis should suffer the same fate as Lexington, Virginia, in the wake of a controversy about the naming of various city parks. Once again, it seems that the very people who once cried that all the Confederacy wanted was to be left alone can’t leave alone localities that do not share their perspective … which suggests that they have no right to complain when various organizations chose to boycott South Carolina in the wake of a continuing controversy about the display of the Confederate flag on the grounds of the state capital.
The whole controversy offers ripe grounds for a Flagger road trip.
As I read it, the Memphis City Council was holding a hearing about what to name (or rename) a certain park once named for Nathan Bedford Forrest when work came that the Tennessee state legislature might pass a bill forbidding the changing of the name of any park named after a military figure. In order to maintain their freedom of action, city officials quickly chose rather non-descript names to avoid having their hands tied by the state.
As you might imagine, lots of people want to chime in on this matter, as you can see here, here, and here. And for a perspective on the civil rights movement generated by this controversy, well, don’t say you didn’t expect this.
Boycotts are a time-honored response to such actions, and I don’t see why anyone should complain if folks choose to employ that response. It will be more interesting to see if anyone cares. But I observe that in the city where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., lost his life, some people in calling for a boycott of a decision they don’t like are simply emulating what King and his followers decided to do in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1955, after Rosa Parks was denied her choice of seats on a bus. What a way to observe Black History Month.