I know the writer does not get to choose the caption or the photos to go with a story, but George Conger's article on the doings in South Carolina misses the mark on several levels. In his article, "US dioceses ‘free to secede" Conger's article refers to secessionists and loyalists and speaks in terms remenesent of what my Southern lady ancesters refered to as "the late lamented disturbance," the Civil War.
Here, however, is the caption and graphic that came with the article. It might have behoved the editor to think for a moment. It is the US that held to the notion that secession is not an option, no matter the basis on which a state entered the union. So of all the flags to fly this is not the one.
An easy mistake to make these days when the US is identified with full blown individualism in which secession is touted as an option.
Of course the flag that ought to have been there as a reminder of the civil alternative to the religious sentiment for secession is this one, the flag of the Confederate States of America. And least anyone accuse me of northern liberal leanings on this, I can only offer this note. I have the civic right to make this comparison since (i) my family, with the exception of my fraternal grandfather, are all from the South, (ii) they were members of the Episcopal Church in the Confederate States of America, and (iii) one direct ancestor was a signer to the Declaration of Independence.
The notion of the right to secession continues to be proudly proclaimed, although it gets morphed into the rebellion of the right and the flag of the Confederacy is replaced with the flag of the United States of America. No wonder then that the editors made the connection.
But let us be clear as we can be: there is no relationship at all between the claim of churches to a right to secession and the matter of states rights, patriotism and other matters of civil virtue.