Confederate flag at the fursuit parade

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Ohelig's picture
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Image here from Next Pittsburgh.

 

Did this person carry the flag through the entire DLCC and nobody thought it might be inappropriate to fly a Confederate flag in front of the public at the parade? I watched the parade from the crowds outside and, while normally people were cheering and clapping at the parade, it got quiet as this guy walked by and I could tell that the people near me were uncomfortable. I doubt it made the fandom look nice, too.

 

Edit: Here's an imgur rehost in case the original goes down

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Unclekage's picture
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Here we ran into the inevitable "this guy is a jackass" vs. "squashing free expression."

There is no doubt that very few people liked what he did.  By the time I saw it, it was too late to do anything about it.  We do intend to discuss it among ourselves to see if we need to adjust the fursuit parade rules.

 

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RC
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Watching the videos from outside, got quite a bit of jeers and comments about it, along with the pride tread on me flag.

To each their own and yeah, it is what it is unfortunately. Can't please everyone.

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Namrepus221's picture
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It was acctually a "Don't Tread on Me" pride flag they had.

Frankly, and a few others have echo'd this statement on reddit and twitter that they were somehow making a statement about marrage and gay rights equality and that the confederate flag being taken down in south carolina, but it was way too over the heads of people to get the reference they were attempting to make. You can make a statement like this all you want, but if you need to explain it in detail so people don't get offended or take it the wrong way. You've lost the point you are trying to make already.

I think sticking a rule in the parade guidelines seeing as we're gonna be out in the city going forward about not displaying things that can or are ment to provoke or offend others might be advisable. But enforcement is gonna be the issue and where you draw the line as to what is provocative or offensive is largely at the observers discression

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Rick2tails's picture
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the main person in the photo had a rainbow dont tread on me flag but the suit behind them had  what is considered the most famous of the confederate flags

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Namrepus221's picture
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Some people on twitter and reddit thought the two (both the pride and confederate flag suiters) were together in the parade for a reason. If it was just happenstance that the two were together and totally unrelated that's possible as well.

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Glelin's picture
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Political statements during the now-public anthrocon parade. I wouldn't condemn the board if they placed a few restrictions.

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Nao
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Well I just see it as a flag. Someone last year had one right? I didn't hear any complaints then.

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bigsiouxwolf's picture
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Indeed. Rebel Coyote has worn a Confederate flag for many years now. Even had it at FWA, where the parade is all in an unrestricted area of the hotel. But I didn't see him with it this year.

As for this incident, just because someone is carrying a confederare flag in the parade does not mean they are makng a political statement. Remeber that we create characters and that flag could just be part of the character. Havng said all that, I'm glad I was nowhere near that fursuiter in the parade.  I actually liked that rainbow "Don't Tread on Me" flag, very creative and could be taken as a play against the whole Tea Party concept.

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Rick2tails's picture
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I   know the one year everyone was carrying flags.I thought they got discouraged after that. Maybe limits to just the american flag might be for the best to prevent any controversey.At least for the outside of the parade route.

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Nao
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Yeah I can see for the outside maybe. But for inside not really

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Isefet's picture
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There aren't just american's at anthrocon. So limiting it just to the American flag would be bad. Plus with a majority of the con having some lean towards being homosexual I see nothing wrong with pride flags. But obvious jackass flags (confedorite, Swastica, etc) should be banned.

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Soggy Otter's picture
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Personally, I support the rights of anyone to wear/display any image/symbol they want to.  Even the swastika.

Makes the ... well, Kage called them Jackasses, but I use stronger words to describe them ... easy to identify and shun.

Soggy

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Thank you, everyfur who attended Highwing's, Skarlath's, and my Zootopia panel!
Will we do it yet again, next year?
As I said last year: "Only time will tell..."

Nao
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same. 

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Rick2tails's picture
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well I`m all for free speech when its just an indivual.But if its part of an Anthrocon public event  where people may feel Anthrocon supports or encourages such speech Its kind of another situation all together.

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Rick2tails's picture
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I mentioned the american flag  because this  convention is held in an american city If I was attending Eurofurence and they limited flags in a fursuit parade to the german one  I would find that reasonible. Or if it was at a UK convention only allowing a union jack flag would seem reasonible. The point is a public parade  during the con is not the proper place or time for any political statements in my opinion. If we are having the outdoor part of the parade to benefit the locals having anything they may detract from the fun or offend some people is most likely not a great idea. Free speech on an indivual basis is very good, its not so good for anthrocon to cause any controversery though.

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Isefet's picture
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What about those people cosplaying animals of other countries? It's not a political statement if I'm waving a Union Jack dressed in my Dogtor Who suit. Are we to start limiting country flags on suits then? Your in Merica your suit can't have a german flag on it?

Political statement is one thing, putting a kabash on the creative glow of Anthrocon is another. 

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axelfox9898's picture
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Yeah,last year i went to AC and the rebel coyote was wearing the conferate flag and i think my mom took offense to the flag.

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Grimno's picture
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In my opinion, should have it so particular symbols that are... "Hot Topics" at the time, shouldn't really be on display.

People are there for Anthrocon, not what the media is dishing out. Unless it's Anthrocon.

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ObliviousAlly's picture
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While I thought that the flag was in poor taste, using things like that for personal use is one thing. I feel that, with it nearly heading the parade that it definitely makes a statement and it might not be the kind of blanket statement the convention attendees want to have over them. I would agree with a no flags in the parade or simply having an Anthrocon flag heading the parade instead of one that could cause an uproar (of any sort).

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I'm going to play devil's advocate for a moment here, since a few people above have stated they found the confederate flag offensive while the rainbow "Gadsden" flag was no problem at all. 

I know the basis of this controversy is about the portrayal of the fandom to the public at large and that waving the confederate flag in the parade may damage it.

Sure, we in the furry fandom are very tolerant and accepting when it comes to LGBT, but has anyone else considered that once the parade stepped outside to the general public, the crowd there may have been just as disapproving of the Rainbow flag as the Confederate one?

Not trying to condemn it, just making an observation. Although I guess both flags are controversial at the moment, since they're both tied to RED HOT, and very recent, matters of debate in the country right now.  

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Soggy Otter's picture
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Helping Koten play devil's advocate here.

Just because GLBT Marriage is now the law of the land.  It doesn't mean that all of the homophobes out there just said  "Oh...  OK...  I was wrong...  Nothing wrong about that anymore!"

Old saying:  "You can't legislate morality."

Soggy

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Thank you, everyfur who attended Highwing's, Skarlath's, and my Zootopia panel!
Will we do it yet again, next year?
As I said last year: "Only time will tell..."

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Maybe we should all forget about flying any flags except a blank white flag?  Take that yellow/black paw rag down from over dlcc while we are at it.  Yeez... get a grip... I'd simply like to get back to putting this media-driven PC stuff aside for awhile and enjoy life.  Life at OUR convention. Furry, straight, gay, NRA, or wha evar. 1st amendment, guys. 

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I don't envy the Board on having to make a judgement here.

If we pick SOME flags over OTHER flags, that sends specific messages
and AC becomes POLITICAL in addition to being fan-based.
We don't need that, nor do the sensible furs want that.

If we say "all flags", that's fair, but allows a minority to
make their own statements and bring a bunch of flags to make
a bunch of THEIR statements. Then AC becomes political.

If we say "no flags except the AC flag", then we avoid all
controversies, and annoy a few people who want to fly a flag.
All things being equal, I'd rather that than the first 2 options.

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MOST AC ATTENDEES DO NOT WEAR A FURSUIT OR ANY FORM OF COSTUME.

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Anthrocon takes no stand in the Confederate Flag debate. It was an embarrassment to the convention that such a controversial symbol was included in the parade and became the focus of news reports as a result, and I would very much like to be put in touch with the fursuiter who thought it appropriate to carry it.

At this point, I must ask: just what do people expect Anthrocon to do in such a situation? The parade was already underway when the flag was discovered, and there was no time for thoughtful discussion on whether or not it was appropriate or should be allowed. All we can do is prepare for the next parade, which begs the same question: "What do people expect Anthrocon to do?"

"I did not like seeing this in the parade!" Granted. Do we now bar that specific thing, in which case we must bar anything that someone else does not like, or may potentially not like?

Or do we say, "Nothing offensive!" in which case we are now required to define "offensive."

My personal desire is to ask people not to (1) wear anything overly revealing that may be inappropriate for children that are outside, or (2) wear or carry such items that may cause embarrassment to Anthrocon, or cause others to believe that Anthrocon is taking a political stance. These people would be asked not to participate in the outdoor portion of the parade, since that is designed to showcase the talent of our fursuit builders and performers, not to shock members of the public or to serve as a platform for political grandstanding.

The matter is being discussed by the Board of Directors, to whom I am answerable. When they decide the best course of action to take, it will be announced in the appropriate forum(s).

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