Don’t ignore history
Wednesday, October 27, 2004

I found the recent article regarding the mural at Needham High School very troubling. Even though the Confederate flag may be an offensive symbol today, it is historically accurate.

The Civil War between the North and the South was a historic event. Both the Union and the Confederacy bore flags into battle. A mural with one or both of these flags is therefore historically accurate.

I recently visited the Gettysburg battlefield. Both the Union and Confederate flags were displayed in the museum and around the site at various monuments. Should we tear the Confederate symbols down? Should history be ignored?

If the mural at the high school depicted an accurate representation of a Civil War scene, then painting over it was clearly censorship. Most American history textbooks used at Needham High School probably depict the Confederate flag as well. What is the difference? Should we now start burning textbooks?

Michael F. Murphy