The whole NASCAR scene appears to be an unwelcoming environment to outsiders: non-Whites and people who don’t have Southern roots. Spectators at the racetracks proudly display the Confederate battle flag, which can also be found emblazoned on everything from T-shirts to bumper stickers.
It’s a place where President Donald Trump has plenty of diehard support, and people view themselves as the most patriot Americans.
A White activist, who said he was inspired by the NFL players’ anthem protest, walked into that environment at the Martinsville Speedway in Virginia on Sunday and set a Confederate flag ablaze before taking a knee, WSLS 10 reported.
Gene Stilp told the NBC News affiliate that NASCAR fans are misguided when they say the Confederate flag is about their heritage but not hate because “the heritage of the Confederate flag is hate.” He stated that the flag he burned had the Confederate symbol on one side and the Nazi symbol on the other side.
“We’re doing that because they both show a similar, misguided value system,” Stilp said. “The misguided value systems include racism, hatred, bigotry, white supremacy, fascism, slavery.”
He decided to conduct his provocative demonstration after NASCAR sided with Trump in his feud with NFL players and owner.
READ MORE: Athletes & Team Owners Condemn Trump Protest Criticism, As Many Plan To #TakeTheKnee
The president praised NASCAR team owners who vowed to fire employees who kneel during the anthem.
At least top NASCAR figure broke from the pack. Driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. tweeted his support for the NFL and team owners.
SOURCE: WSLS 10
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