Politics

NASCAR nixes Confederate flag, betrays race fans

Even this southern sports icon has gone PC.

Image Credit: Shutterstock

In a disturbing sign of the times, a sport that has been a point of southern pride and glory for over seventy years has decided to embrace PC cancel culture and ban the rebel flag from all its events. Yes, race fans…NASCAR has fallen to the Left.

For decades fans braved the heat in the infield at places like Talladega and Charlotte to watch their favorite drivers compete in a test of speed, courage, and expertise during which the rebel flag dotted infield campsites and was waved in grandstands by patrons young and old. That has now come to an end.

NASCAR announced on Wednesday, “The presence of the Confederate flag at NASCAR events runs contrary to our commitment to providing a welcoming and inclusive environment for all fans, our competitors and our industry. Bringing people together around a love for racing and the community that it creates is what makes our fans and sport special. The display of the Confederate flag will be prohibited from all NASCAR events and properties.”

The sport’s corporate masters must now somehow convince its fans that it has not sold out to the PC crowd. Good luck. Enforcing the policy may prove problematic and NASCAR did not offer details. Though the specter of some good ol’ boy Ricky Bobby turned Thought Policeman telling a family to remove a rebel flag bumper sticker from their car before they enter a race parking lot should give NASCAR pause. A bit of that, and with the attendant publicity, and gate receipts could dry up speedily. In coming up with this absurd plan, perhaps the NASCAR public relations idiots have confused the Coca-Cola 600 with New York’s Upper West Side deli counter at Zabar’s. If so, their comeuppance may be apparent posthaste.

The issue was pushed front and center by Bubba Wallace, NASCAR’s only black driver, who called for the rebel flag to be banned at NASCAR events and said there was “no place” for it in the sport. Now while Mr. Wallace is certainly entitled to his opinion, why is his mere opinion now dispositive when it comes to the entire sport? If Mr. Wallace had decreed that he preferred shocking pink to be the mandatory color for all NASCAR pit crew uniforms (because if that was not done other colors may feel left out), would the sport have jumped to his tune so quickly? Of course not. Mr. Wallace conveniently used the recent riots to ride a PC wave and NASCAR leadership was too cowardly to tell him, “Okay fine, Bubba, you can do what you like with your own car. Please extend that courtesy to other drivers, teams, and fans as well.”

The ban was announced before Wednesday night’s race at Martinsville Speedway in Virginia, where Wallace drove Richard Petty Motorsports’ No. 43 Chevrolet with a #BlackLivesMatter paint scheme. Yes, you read that right.

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“It’s been a stressful couple of weeks,” said Wallace. “This is no doubt the biggest race of my career tonight. I’m excited about tonight. There’s a lot of emotions on the race track.” To add insult to, well, insult, Wallace wore a black “I Can’t Breathe” T-shirt. By the way, in the “biggest race” of his career? He came in 11th. So, unless he’s relatively talentless he wasn’t talking about the race itself but of his PR victory over NASCAR fans.

But all the likely resentment by fans is okay really. As long as all those rabid Hollywood NASCAR supporters and all those Oscar winners who regularly attend Darlington and Martinsville agree, right? Right?

In legitimate response to NASCAR cancel culture, Truck Series driver Ray Ciccarelli posted on Facebook he would quit the sport, saying: “I could care less about the Confederate Flag but there are ppl that do and it doesn’t make them a racist.” Well said, Mr. Ciccarelli. As opposed to NASCAR, he understands the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. NASCAR helmet artist Jason Beam tweeted “ignorance wins again, NASCAR you realize the North had slaves too, lol not just the South, you want to remove the American Flag as well, idiots.”

Most other drivers and teams will just get with the program and will abide by the new rules. And just like that, just as the Left designs it, another traditional American cultural icon falls into the Orwellian memory hole until one by one, there will be hardly any left standing.

David Kamioner
meet the author

David Kamioner is a veteran of U.S. Army Intelligence and an honors graduate of the University of Maryland's European Division. He also served with the Pershing Nuclear Brigade and the First Infantry Division. Subsequent to that he worked for two decades as a political consultant, was part of the American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina disaster relief effort in Louisiana, ran a homeless shelter for veterans in Philadelphia, and taught as a college instructor. He serves as a Contributing Editor for LifeZette.

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