I am grateful to the South Carolina legislators for voting to take down the Confederate flag from the capitol grounds. I appreciate their readiness to act in a timely fashion and get it done.
It is always difficult to do something you are reluctant to do (or at least, reluctant to do in the spotlight) when many others are telling you it is the right thing to do, the right side of history, the right time, past time, etc. I've had that little feeling of gall when I've made an error and had to retract it. But there aren't usually people around to rub salt in my wounds.
I hope not much salt gets rubbed in the wounds of South Carolina's elected leaders. More pain is not conducive to right thinking, and if the legislative body is to go on and strive to make good law, salt won't help. But I imagine constituencies on both sides will irritate these Senate and House members and tempt feelings of righteousness and anger.
I'm trying not to use the word "healing" here, even though I'm using wounds as a metaphor. We have a long way to go to heal the wounds of slavery, and I think we are too quick to seek signs that Ferguson and Staten Island and Cleveland and Charlotte are "healing." And I'm only talking about the very slight wound of having to rescind in public the act of earlier legislative action to fly the Confederate flag. It's painful, and I'm glad these men and women saw their way through the pain and ordered the flag to come down.