Gettysburg Rising will host an open forum on the Confederate flag on Saturday, March 3, with CWI as a co-sponsor. The event, which will take place in the Lincoln Ballroom of the Comfort Inn (located at 945 Baltimore Pike, Gettysburg), will begin at 6:30 pm. This moderated forum will provide an opportunity for members of the community to express and be exposed to different viewpoints on the Confederate flag. David P. Hadley, Ph.D., visiting assistant professor of history at Gettysburg College, will serve as the moderator. “We were purposeful in choosing March 3 as the date since that is both Abolitionists Day and Confederate Flag Day,” notes Jenny Dumont, head of the Gettysburg Rising steering committee. “Our goal is to promote dialogue that will lead to increased tolerance and awareness and a deeper knowledge of how this symbol is linked to particular ideologies, values, and social systems.”
Pete Carmichel, director of the Civil War Institute, expressed his hope that the event “will promote greater historical understanding of the flag and other expressions of Confederate iconography. I applaud Gettysburg Rising for bringing together a wide range of people who have a deep interest and stake in how our community remembers and presents its Civil War past to the public.”
The organizers welcome diverse points of view and ask that all participants agree to a respectful exchange of ideas and thoughts. Each person who wishes to speak will have four minutes to share his/her perspective or ask questions. The intent is to provide a space for dialogue about the appropriateness of selling Confederate flag merchandise, the significance of the flag in the local identity of Gettysburg as a tourist destination, and reasons for displaying the flag. The organizers’ goal is to make possible a respectful dialogue in which participants can listen to others’ viewpoints and emerge with a better understanding of a range of perspectives.
Gettysburg Rising is a nonpartisan and inclusive grassroots organization devoted to bringing civic engagement to Gettysburg and Adams County.