Confederate flag marker in local cemetery will probably stay

062515+met+confederate+flag+01Is the image of the Confederate flag in a local public cemetery offensive? Or is it simply a monument recognizing a part of our nation’s history?

That’s the small piece of a national debate playing out at Woodlawn Cemetery, just across the street from the Norton Museum of Art on Dixie Highway.

About a year or so ago, I wandered into Woodlawn for the first time during a break on a bike ride. I snapped a few photos with my smartphone and eventually posted a couple on Instagram and Facebook.

062515+met+confederate+flag+03One photo I shared was a close-up of the 10-ft. tall monument with the Confederate flag, a monument that has stood since 1941 when it was posted to recognize Confederate soldiers who died in the Civil War.

I posted the photo because I thought it was interesting that you could find an image of the Confederate flag — a symbol from a war fought 150 years ago — in our local cemetery.

But not everyone who looked at my Facebook page was happy to see it. There was no big debate on my page but at least one friend commented on being offended to see the image of the Confederate flag.

Last week, I visited the cemetery again, this time for reporting on a story that was published today. It’s the only public Confederate flag image in Palm Beach County, a topic worth exploring because of the current national debate about the image of the flag.

Not many folks, especially from the younger generations, know it’s there.

Palm Beach County Commissioner Priscilla Taylor said she never knew it was there. But Taylor, who is black, said she finds the image of the Confederate flag offensive.

Others say it has been there more than 70 years without anyone raising any questions, so leave it be.

Chances are, it will.

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