What Do You See When Looking At A Confederate (Battle) Flag

confederate flagA Nashville news station asked viewers their opinions on the removal of the Confederate flag from state buildings in South Carolina etc. Walmart also announced the removal of all products with the Confederate emblem from their stores. I stated my opinion, not realizing the amount of support I would have. It was the day of constant Facebook notifications.

My opinion:

I see history with that flag. Leave it. Hate is from within. It has nothing to do with flags, or anything/anyone else. Unless people lived in that era, they should see it as history. We were taught it in school. That’s history. If you hate it otherwise and seeing it stirs bad feelings, that was taught at home. And that hatred is from within.

Do you think of mistreated Christians when you see a Christian flag? Or mistreated gays if you see a gay flag? Do you think of the white Irish slaves when you see their flag? I don’t. To me they are flags. A person who sees negative was taught to see it that way.

Example:

If you took a group of first graders to look at mass amounts of flags they would see flags. They wouldn’t point out a specific one and say “THAT one has to go. It is evil!”

Fast forward years of being taught mixed with ones own feelings, life experiences etc. And take that same group in their 50’s. They would have stories for most both good and bad, and possibly resentment and hatred for some at the very sight of them. Why? They learned to.

The responses from the news post encouraged me to dig deeper and ask around. So I took it a step further in effort to prove my point. I took a poll. Here are the results.

Question: What do you think of when you see this flag?

Age 4   It has staz like the staz on my “shut” (stars, shirt)

Age 6   It has the same colors like the America flag

Age 8   I see you have a flag in your hand (uncontrollably giggling)

Age 10  I think of BIG monster trucks. 

Age 14  I think of the civil war and how the south lost

Age 16  I think of racism

So there you have it. Racism and hatred is a taught/learned behavior.

It is not the flags killing people. It is not a statue that represents history and things our society has overcome that is killing people. It is not the guns killing people. It’s people killing people.

People who were taught to never see the good in something, yes, those people are the ones killing people. You know, those people who were never taught how to love. We should remove those people, not the items in this world they blame for their heartless actions. Those items represent history, and are a reminder of how far we have come. And people like the Charleston shooter, are a reminder of how far we have yet to go.

God Given Mirror




© Angela Bininger and The Empowerers, 2009-2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this websites author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Angela Bininger and The Empowerers with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Divorce: The Only Time We Die, Yet Live To Talk About It

Divorce is one of the only times in life a human will die, go through the stages of grief, and live to talk about it. The process is accompanied by a level of pain comparable to a death, or what one might experience with a serious illness.

There are several stages to the grieving process that can last for any amount of time. It all depends on how big the loss was. But to most, a broken marriage is a huge loss. Even more so if children are involved.

Shock & Denial is where the grieving process begins when a relationship ends. The shock is much worse if your spouse has already moved on with someone else. You may find yourself saying “This is not happening” “We were suppose to ____!” “I didn’t see this coming!” “None of this is my fault!” “Well maybe if I would have___.” You may even find yourself not taking him or her seriously about the divorce. You may be avoiding the issue in hopes that they change their mind.

Anger & Hatred  are by far the worst phases; aside from depression. We begin to get mad at ourselves, and the other person. Often times, we are mad at the world. Everyone is out to get us!

The anger phases comes and goes throughout the process. I have found that people often bounce back and forth between stages one, two, and three. At times we might think we have entered the next phase of grief, then a previous stage surfaces unexpectedly. Sometimes it can surface just by looking at the other person.

Anger can last for many years. Perhaps forever once it takes root. It truly varies from person to person. 

Bargaining is something we do to try and hold on to the relationship and it often occurs at the same time as phase one, denial. It goes hand in hand with denial. “I will do ___ if you take me back”, “I will buy you ___” “We can go on a trip” “Look, I finally got you that ____ that you wanted”. We sometimes even begin to bargain with God. “Lord if you fix this I will never ______ again!” “God if you ____ I will ____.

Depression can be a scary stage of grief. It is important to keep activities scheduled to keep from slipping into a deep depression. Surround yourself with loved ones and positive people. With depression one loses interest in normal activities, they oversleep or don’t get enough sleep, and the eating habits are comparable to the sleeping. They are either eating a lot, or very little at all. They may have suicidal thoughts, and struggle just to get out of bed. They are remembering only good things about the relationship. And they have very little interest in their life. They feel hopeless.

Acceptance  is when we begin to pick up the pieces. We can take the positive things we learned by having the relationship, and simply chalk up the loss. We see that there is hope. Yes, there is some light at the end of that dark tunnel. 

Once one reaches the stage of acceptance, they have regained more control of their new life. It gives them more control of their destiny. They realize that they can do it! It is when they begin to dream again, discover themselves, and begin to truly live.

I once read somewhere that it takes approximately 3-6 months for every year you were married to complete all 5 phases of grieving. From what I have seen, that number is fairly accurate. There is life after divorce. It just doesn’t truly begin until we have grieved the loss, learned our lesson that was intended for us to learn in that relationship, and move on. In doing that we have discovered who we are again, and may even get down the road and be thankful for that loss.

Healing, takes time. And time, heals. Most of the time it heals anyway.

© Angela Bininger and The Empowerer, 2009-2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this websites author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.