Governor Nikki Haley called for the Confederate flag to be removed from the front of the State House building in South Carolina, saying it served as an offensive symbol of the massacre of nine black residents last Wednesday in Charleston. Hailing from the South himself, Atlanta resident and Run the Jewels MC Killer Mike was happy about Haley’s call to action.
He spoke to The Fader about his opinion of the Confederate flag and how he doesn’t have any issues with individuals flying it privately, but it should be nowhere near public grounds.
“My opinion on the Confederate flag is quite simple and clear,” he said. “I have no problem with Southerners who consider that a part of their heritage flying it privately in their homes or [wearing it] on their shirts or jackets. Even if that’s your choice of vanity license plate, you pay a tax for your license plate in Georgia. So that’s your tax, for your license plate. I have white friends who have the Confederate flag on their license plates and I have no issue with that, if they see that as a matter of heritage. But I do not think it should ever fly over a state, city, county building or school, for the simple reason that it represents secession from the Union. It represented a part of the country trying to become a separate country from America. That side lost, and you do not fly the flags of losers over the winners’ country. It’s just that simple. There’s no way around that.”
Killer Mike goes on to say the Confederate flag was explained to him as a flag of racism, “that there are often men who will use that flat to try to terrorize black people.” But despite how he was raised, he is not afraid of the flag. He believes individuals have a right to wear or own the flag if it is used in a respectful matter. When people such as accused Charleston shooter Dylann Roof — who Killer Mike calls a terrorist — use the flag for racist acts, that’s where he draws the line.
“What I care about is an environment where states like South Carolina will allow that flag to fly above their state building and they know that flag is used as a symbol of empowerment for white supremacy. I care that it’s allowed to enforce a sick and perverse mentality by hanging atop a state building that taxpayers pay for. My primary objection to it is firmly grounded in a political argument, not an emotional one. It’s less to do about me — ‘Hey, I’m black and it hurts my feelings, it’s a symbol of slavery and oppression’ — and more to do with the fact that, as an American, I will not honor a group of treacherous traitors. That’s why I despise the rebel flag. Long live the South, and quickly die the Confederacy.”
The rapper ends his op-ed by calling to action minority groups that have been affected by the tragedy. He encourages them to fix their state with their right to vote and attack racist corporations by withholding their money.
Read his entire opinion here.