Since moving back to Florida in October I have been very aware of the increased display of confederate flags. Now let’s get this straight, I’ve lived in most of the southern states, I’ve driven through all of them, I’ve lived in areas that you simply knew as a Black woman, not to get out the car. I’ve driven through small towns where the looks made me sweat, and the need to urinate increased with my rapidly beating heart. The look that says “nigger you better keep riding, your kind is not welcome here”. If you haven’t felt that panic, checked your mirrors, prayed that your GPS signal was strong, and called a friend to talk you trough that fear, give thanks.
In the previous months, I’ve seen the confederate flag posted, displayed in yards, on cars, and trucks flying down the highway from Georgia to Florida. The road leading to my parents home, I’ve counted more than 10 in the yards surrounding. Take a drive a mile up the homes sit on acres, confederate flags line almost every gate for two miles straight. I lived a part of my formative years here, I’m used to seeing a flag here or there, but never in all my years returning have I seen such an open display of racial supremacy.
You don’t need to agree with me, these are my feelings, I’m an observer of people and environments and this my friends is different. This message is to instill reminders of bondage and fear, and as much as seeing that flag in a park full of mixed race children upset and unnerved me, I continued to walk, take pictures and chat with locals. Who knows, the man driving that very truck displaying his ignorance, might be the same man who shared my excitement about seeing wildlife and suggesting when to return.
If I’m being honest, I’ve been fearful in spaces that I’m usually comfortable because of the recent social and political events, but hey, travel isn’t simply about those days of pretty pictures and perfect food feeds, travel opens the mind, breaks your heart and mirrors your own insecurities, I’ll take that any day, tears of frustration, anger and all 🙏🏿
Make sure you check out my previous blog post, like, comment and share the love. Have you noticed a change in behaviors of locals where you live? Drop a comment and let’s discuss. Find me on Instagram, Facebook, and sometimes Twitter! Much ❤️