Bubba Watson and the General Lee

General LeeAs I’m sure everyone knows, what is called the Confederate Flag but is actually the Battle Flag of Northern Virginia and upon whose design was based the Second Flag of the Confederacy as well as a number of other flags associated with the South during the civil war, is in the news. I’m not going to reiterate that story, I’m sure everyone is tired of it by now. Or almost everyone.

The story today is about a golfer named Bubba Watson who purchased the General Lee used in the making of the The Dukes of Hazzard television show. He bought it at auction in 2012. Now he plans to paint over the iconic flag on the roof of the vehicle and replace it with the Stars and Stripes.

As I said, I’m not going to talk about the flag issue. Instead I’d like to examine the reaction to Watson’s decision to paint over the flag.

It basically comes in two flavors.

  1. Watson is a coward who caved to public demand.
  2. Watson is just doing it because he doesn’t want to alienate fans.

I’ve got a third reason: He decided he wanted to do it. He thinks it’s the right thing for him to do.

He bought the car because he loved the show. The Dukes of Hazzard was not about racism or hurting other people. It was ostensibly about moonshining, as Watson mentions in the article, but it was really about a couple of young cousins who are fighting corrupt authority figures. That and those Daisy Duke shorts.

I think the reaction to Watson’s decision is a microcosm of the unfortunate political condition of the United States these days. People want to assign blame for everything that happens without any reasoned look at the facts. It is apparently impossible for most people to take Watson at his word. We’ve got to blame someone, presumably a member of the other party.

Watson implies that the symbol is divisive and is not what the show stood for. He thinks the symbol detracts from what the car should be about. He wants to paint the Stars and Stripes on it.

Me, I’m a Libertarian. Watson owns the car and can do with it as he damn well pleases. I take him at his word.

Tom Liberman
Sword and Sorcery fantasy with a Libertarian Ideology
Current Release: The Black Sphere
Next Release: The Girl in Glass I: Apparition – Release date: late August 2015

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