So, on Friday the parson headed down to the Quik Trip to purchase some gas, some beverage, and, truth be told, this time, a lottery ticket (It could happen.).
He stood at the pump, filling the tank, when he noticed the red pickup truck directly in front of him, parked near the door of the building. Extending over the tail gate of the truck were two 5’ x 8’ flags. One was the Confederate Battle Flag; the other was another version of the same with the words, “The South will rise again.”
The parson watched, as the dollar numbers continued to roll over on the pump indicator, an African-American young man walking from his vehicle at a nearby pump. He was headed inside the store. Dressed in jeans and a white t-shirt with no sleeves, his biceps bulged. He stopped about twenty feet from the Confederate adorned vehicle and stared. Then he shook his head from side to side and headed inside.
The parson finished pumping the gas. As he was retrieving his receipt from the pump, he saw the young lady exiting the store. She was dressed in a tight t-shirt and shorts with a Confederate flag about two feet in length tied to a belt loop on her right side. She walked up to the red pickup truck with the Confederate flags extended over the tailgate. She turned and faced the store. [“Forgive me father for I have sinned,” the parson silently confessed. He had stopped looking at the Confederate flag hanging from her right belt loop and, instead, fixed his eyes on the substantial amount of butt cheek displayed below her short-shorts, complimenting her Southern heritage.]
Gas nozzle returned to the holder, receipt in hand, the parson got back in the car, drove it into the parking spot adjacent to the protectors of a sinful culture. Exiting the car, he stopped before going into the store. “Interesting flag,” he said. “What regiment did your granddaddy serve in?”
“What?” the young fellow in his mid-twenties asked.
“What regiment did your granddaddy serve in, wait, seeing how young you are it must have been your Great-great-great granddaddy.”
“What are you talking about?” he asked, stepping toward the parson. At that point, Charlie Brown, the parson’s faithful canine companion and his girlfriend Penny both stood up in the car seats.
“I’m just asking you what regiment your ancestors served in in the War of Northern Aggression. Mine served in the Georgia Fifth Infantry.”
“Are you making fun of me?” he asked.
“Yes,” the parson said. “I am.”
The wannabe defender of the Confederacy stated at the parson another half minute. Then the parson said, “Tell me, what does that mean?” He pointed to the flag which proclaimed “The South Will Rise Again.”
“What do you mean?” he asked. “Are you making fun of me?”
“I told you already, I am,” the parson said. “Listen, the South will rise again when the Governor of Georgia pushes extending Medicaid benefits so the poor people of this state, like your cousins, can benefit more from Obamacare. The South will rise again when the legislature of this state raises the minimum wage so people can lift themselves up. And the South will rise again when you and your friends here stop flying these idiotic flags and do some to make the South a better place to live.”
The parson turned and walked in the store to the sound of both Charlie Brown and Penny growling.
Inside that fellow with the t-shirt with the cut-off sleeves was getting some pizza. “Thanks,” said the parson.
“For what?” he asked.
“For not responding to those flags,” the parson responded. “I know it offended you.”
“It did,” he said. “Look, I saw you talking to them. What did you say?”
“Not much,” the parson replied. “Ignorance can be fixed. Stupid is forever.”