NASCAR Industry Officials Asking Fans To Stop Displaying Confederate Flag At Tracks

The Confederate Flag flies during an event at Darlington Speedway in Darlington, S.C. (Photo: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

The Confederate Flag flies during an event at Darlington Speedway in Darlington, S.C. (Photo: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

In a joint industry statement released Thursday, NASCAR member tracks appealed to fans to not display confederate flags while attending events.

“As members of the NASCAR industry, we join NASCAR in the desire to make our events among the most fan-friendly, welcoming environments in all of sports and entertainment.

“To do that, we are asking our fans and partners to join us in a renewed effort to create an all-inclusive, even more welcoming atmosphere for all who attend our events. This will include the request to refrain from displaying the Confederate Flag at our facilities and NASCAR events.

“We are committed to providing a welcoming atmosphere free of offensive symbols. This is an opportunity for NASCAR Nation to demonstrate its sense of mutual respect and acceptance for all who attend our events while collectively sharing the tremendous experience of NASCAR racing.”

The statement was released by a group that includes management of International Speedway Corporation (ISC) owned tracks, Speedway Motorsports Inc. owned tracks and Dover International Speedway, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Pocono Raceway
Iowa Speedway, Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, Road America, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, Eldora Speedway and Gateway Motorsports Park.

The confederate flag, while seen as a symbol of Southern heritage, has also long been embraced as a symbol for white supremacist groups.

NASCAR management recently reiterated their long-standing stance against use of the flag. Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Jeff Gordon have also recently spoken out against the flag as offensive and a symbol of racism and hate.

A growing movement against displaying the flag was recently revived after nine black worshippers were killed last months at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C. Twenty-one year old Dylann Roof, who committed the murders, had embraced the culture of white supremacy.


  1. This will go over like a fart in church. PC at its finest.

  2. So now the flag is killing these people ?

  3. Please don’t wear a Gold’s Gym shirt to the race either

  4. Dealer Dealer says

    Please don’t drive a Lexus low rider with chrome wheels either…

  5. Andy Boright says

    As a white middle aged male who was born in the U.S., I’m frighten of people who wear the burqa in public. When is NASCAR and the Cup series tracks going to publicly request that people don’t wear the burqa at NASCAR events?

  6. And just as those burqas keep you away from people wearing them, the confederate flag keeps many other people away from NASCAR.

  7. Nonsense, flags don’t make sickos kill. Just what nascar needs to do, turn the diehard fan away. More empty seats! Smart!

  8. Let’s sum up the arguments of the pro-Confederate flag crowd:

    – MY church has never been burned down
    – MY kids’ school has never been bombed
    – No one has ever burned a cross on MY lawn
    – No one in MY family has ever been attacked by police dogs
    – No one in MY family has ever been lynched by a mob
    – No one in MY family was ever owned by other people — people who FOUGHT a WAR over the RIGHT to do so (that’s fact, not opinion; read the documents of secession from the Confederate states)

    So, these people who HAVE experienced these things, need to JUST GET OVER IT. Doesn’t matter that the Confederate flag is associated with all those things. It’s just a flag.


    Tell me… If you can look at the American flag on this 4th of July and feel pride, and respect, and hope, and honor, how is it possible that you CAN’T understand that the Confederate flag means JUST THE OPPOSITE for a huge number of our fellow citizens?

    Most of you would flip your sh*t if you thought for even a second that you saw gang symbols or gang colors at a track. Well, the stars and bars is a symbol used by the KKK, the Aryan Nation, and European white supremacists who fly it in place of the swastika (which is banned).

    You don’t take down the Confederate flag because it’s going to bring in more fans, or because it will miraculously prevent 9 more innocent people from being murdered in cold blood. You take it down because IT’S THE RIGHT THING TO DO. (Hat tip to Dave Moody.)

  9. I thought America was the land of the free and home of the brave??? It seems we are more and more everyday becoming a communist country from telling us what are kids in school to eat and drink to this stupid flag crap. Freedom of religion,speech,etc YA right !!!!!! If people are so affended by certain things we have a right to move to another country and see if it’s any better otherwise shut the hell up.

  10. So Mike 86 the confederate flag symbolizes murdering the Afro American people right ? Okay so what about the Stars and Stripes , does that symbolize the murder of the Japanese people with the big ole bomb ? I am confused here . Somebody help me out .

  11. Jim,

    Go read the Secession Documents.

    If you still don’t get it, there’s no hope for you.

  12. Not sure why your’e confused, Jim – it’s pretty simple. We were at war with Japan. We used our “big ole bomb” on the Japanese to ensure WE, as a nation, did not end up subjugated by the Axis powers. They hit us; we hit them back harder. Ended the war sooner, and saved countless Allied lives.

    On the other hand, the Southern states seceded from, and went to war with, the North over the idea that they had the right to own human beings. Those human beings are, today, our fellow citizens.
    The Confederate flag was rarely seen after the Civil War, until about the middle of the 20th century. That’s when it was reinvigorated, as a symbol for the segregationists and the Klan.

    Why in the world would we, as a nation, tolerate a symbol of hate, white supremacy, slavery and segregation to fly at ANY sporting event?

    So, I don’t particularly care how the Japanese view the Stars and Stripes. But I DO care how my fellow citizens are treated.

  13. But the flag itself did not kill the people that’s what I am saying .

  14. And for the record I do not have a confederate flag , I do have a wife who is Japanese and she is your fellow citizen . The Afro American is not the only people to be exploited .

  15. Sect.D Row25 says

    That flag should have been against the law to display from the moment they lost the war. One Nation. You lose and still run around with this flag like it means something. GTFOH.

  16. Jim, you are right, the flag didn’t kill people. What the flag represents leads people to kill people.

  17. Andy Boright says

    Until about 3 weeks ago, nobody had much of a problem with a flag that isn’t much seen at Cup events outside of where RVs are parked.

    That flag isn’t why the tracks are taking out seats.

    A little history lesson folks, when the Southern States succeeded from the Union, slavery was still legal in the North. Succession was over state rights, not slavery.

    Forcing P.C. down people’s throats isn’t going to open the gates of NASCAR races to black people, it is simply going to alienate even more people from NASCAR.

    This isn’t about doing the right thing, it’s simply going with the wind of public opinion. Similar to the Salem witch trials, public hysteria is often misguided and wrong.

  18. for those of you saying no one cared until 2 weeks ago… why did dale earnhard sr. remove the confederate flag off the bumper of one of his pickup trucks?

    because dale earnhardt sr. was a decent enough person to realize what that flag stands for for a lot of people. and he’s been dead for nearly 15 years.–junior-both-criticized-confederate-flag-165220032.html

    it’s not a matter of the PC police. it’s not a matter of your “freedom of speech.” no one has banned the flag. they’ve simply asked that you stop being a jerk about it, and think about someone other than yourself for two minutes.

  19. Andy, do some more reading, from credible sources.

    Long before the Civil War started, there were laws in place to prohibit the further spread of slavery to the west. The end of slavery was going to happen, long before it happened, and it was known. That terrified the south since their agricultural economy depended on the cheap slave labor. In an attempt to thwart the end of slavery, the south tried to enact “States Rights”, which was to allow individual states to nullify, or ignore, Federal laws, and just do whatever they want as if the Federal Government did not exist, and the Constitution did not exist. When the states that were going to lose slavery did not get their way with the ruse of States Rights, they played the victim card, and claimed tyranny and oppression by the Federal (Union) government. Andy, the North prevailed.

    Go read the secession documents. Amazing that to this day there are some people that think the Civil War was about anything other than slavery. It all traces back to slavery, one way or another.

    I made it easy for you, here’s a link to The Declaration of Causes of Seceding States:

    Here’s a snippet, from Mississippi’s Declaration of Secession:

    “Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery– the greatest material interest of the world. Its labor supplies the product which constitutes by far the largest and most important portions of commerce of the earth. These products are peculiar to the climate verging on the tropical regions, and by an imperious law of nature, none but the black race can bear exposure to the tropical sun. These products have become necessities of the world, and a blow at slavery is a blow at commerce and civilization. That blow has been long aimed at the institution, and was at the point of reaching its consummation. There was no choice left us but submission to the mandates of abolition, or a dissolution of the Union, whose principles had been subverted to work out our ruin. That we do not overstate the dangers to our institution, a reference to a few facts will sufficiently prove.”

    Andy, that’s not PC at all. Maybe to you, but not to me.

    The Confederate Flag is a symbol of the southern states that attempted, and failed let me remind you, to save their precious institution of slavery (aka: Southern Heritage), and committed treason as part of that attempt. Showing that flag as a sense of pride or desire is disgusting.

    The only use for the Confederate Flag is historical, as the flag of a treasonous attempt at secession by the southern states to preserve their precious institution of slavery. The southern states went to war, and lost. The flag is an artifact of that war.

  20. Andy Boright says: “Until about 3 weeks ago, nobody had much of a problem with a flag that isn’t much seen at Cup events outside of where RVs are parked.”

    Andy, the Confederate Flag has alway been a representative of slavery, oppression and hate. Just that with recent events, it’s link to slavery and those that are still racist and use the Confederate Flag as their symbol, has really come to the attention of the public. The Confederate Flag has long been a symbol of hate, slavery and oppression. That was its intent, if you look up the history of the Confederate Flag and its predecessors. The recent event just pushed the issue over the edge, and now anyone linked to the Confederate Flag will be identifying themselves as racists.

  21. Andy,

    Your facts are wrong.

    Go read the secession documents. Read the states’ own words. You can easily find excerpts online. Many states EXPLICITLY describe white supremacy and the right to own slaves as their rationale for secession.

    Usually the victor writes the history. In this case, we allowed the South to REWRITE the history. Why? Well, probably because we wanted the nation to heal and reconcile.

    States rights? The South was AGAINST states’ rights. Southern states dominated the federal government back then. The last thing they wanted was individual states doing their own thing — like outlawing slavery.

    A lot of this has been swept under the rug by school textbook publishers. Why? Well, YOU try selling a history textbook in southern school districts when it talks about their ancestors as white supremacists. These people still refer to it as “the war of northern aggression!” (I know because I have Southern relatives,)

    Finally, just for the sake of argument, let’s put aside all the Civil War stuff.

    In OUR lifetimes, the confederate flag has come to symbolize the Klan and the Aryan Nation.

    And you honestly think it’s because NASCAR wants to be “PC” that they want to remove the flag?

    I think it’s hilarious that people keep saying, “Oh, taking the flag down won’t bring in any black fans.” Maybe. Maybe not. But that assumes only black people are offended by the Confederate flag. Racing STILL has a redneck image in the minds of a lot of people. Having that flag flying only reinforces that image.

    Last point: Corporate America. When certain states (IN being the prime example) recently tried to pass laws that would, in effect, allow discrimination against gays, what happened? Companies told them it would have an adverse impact on business and strongly opposed it. The legislation was modified or, in most cases, just died.

    There’s a hell of a lot more African-Anericans than gays in the U.S. Do you think it’s easier or harder to sell a corporate sponsorship today if the “product” is associated with racism?

    It’s 2015. It’s time to put all this garbage behind us.

    Take the flag down and let’s go racing.

  22. Andy Boright says

    To claim the confederate flag represents “slavery, oppression and hate” is trying to think and speak for everyone. In some people’s mind it may represent that, but not in all. For a lot of people it simply represents southern pride.

    Some militia groups use the U.S. flag to represent their cause, should that flag be removed from race tracks because some home-based terrorist groups have adopted that flag to represent their group?

    To claim anyone linked to the Confederate Flag will be identifying themselves as racists is as dumb as claiming the Dukes of Hazzard is a racist program.

    It is proof however that liberals are as good at stereotyping people as anyone else in this country.

  23. It was a flag flown by a nation devoted to slavery and white supremacy. It’s a symbol well known today as one used by groups that represent white supremacy.

    The flag represents Southern pride? Pride in what?

    That flag was flown by Southern soldiers. Flying the flag = pride in what the south fought for. Slavery and white supremacy.

    People aren’t necessarily identifying with racism by flying the flag. But once its meaning is explained, you would hope people would understand why it’s offensive to many.

    If someone started flying a flag with a swastika, and they defended it by saying, “No, it’s a symbol that dates back to the ancient Greeks,” it would be no less offensive to our contemporary sensibilities.

  24. Thanks for the history lesson guys.

  25. Andy Boright says: “For a lot of people it simply represents southern pride.”

    Andy, what exactly is southern pride?

    Go ahead…

  26. Andy Boright says: “Some militia groups use the U.S. flag to represent their cause, should that flag be removed from race tracks because some home-based terrorist groups have adopted that flag to represent their group?”

    Andy, do you want to be associated with a home-based terrorist group? The Confederate Flag is their symbol. It’s their colors. It represents hate and supremacy. I never see anyone other than white people flaunting the Confederate Flag.

    Andy, do you mean the militia group that is on high alert because US military training going on in the southwest? The same training that has these militia groups, and some Governors, fearing a military invasion of Texas, and subsequent declaration of marshall law? Andy, do you mean those same stupid-idiot-moron militias?

    Again, another good reason, and guilty by association, to make sure the Confederate Flag is relegated to a status as an artifact of history.

  27. To “darealgoodfella”

    My understanding of the “States’ rights” aspect of this is just a little different from yours. The South was vehemently opposed to states’ rights at the time of the Civil War because Northern states were enacting laws that kept them from having to enforce the federal Fugitive Slave Act. The South wanted its escaped slaves back, and the North wouldn’t cooperate.

    Ironically, the Southern states were citing states’ rights 100 years later as their rationale for not enforcing desegregation or Civil Rights laws.

    To “Pete:” Thanks for the link to the Earnhardt article… that was new info for me.

  28. Mike86,

    The “States’ Rights” aspect, from what I have read, appears to be just another way for the South to claim tyranny and oppression on the North. Whenever the south didn’t get its way, it claimed tyranny and oppression. “States’ Rights” was definitely intended to allow individual states to nullify Federal law, or simply ignore Federal law. That can’t happen, there is a clear hierarchy of governmental authority, and a state can not make law to nullify higher authority law. We know that as being unConstitutional. Slavery was already restricted, and being further restricted by not being allowed to spread to the west. The push to end slavery was coming, it was known. The “States’ Rights” move was a “Hail Mary” by the southern states to maintain their institution of slavery as laws were passed, enacted or enforced to end slavery, before they had no other choice to do the ultimate and attempt to secede.

    I do believe that the topic of “States’ Rights” is discussed in the Secession Documents.

    But the confederate flag is the representative symbol for all this, and is nothing to be proud of today.

  29. Crazy in NY says

    Dareal, what exactly is Boston Proud?

    Go ahead…

  30. Crazy in NY, what is you point with this:

    “Dareal, what exactly is Boston Proud?

    Go ahead…”

    What does that have to do with this thread?

    Go ahead…

  31. “DaReal”

    I think you and I arrived at the same point: States Rights was cited in an attempt to nullify a federal law (in this case, the Fugitive Slave Act). Hence, the South was *opposed* to States’ Rights. They wanted the federal law upheld.

    And federal law, as you say, supersedes state law.

    So, legally, the South was on the right side there. They had been able to get a federal law passed that created an obligation to return escaped slaves to their owners. (Sorry — “escaped humans” to their “masters;” no more sugarcoating). The North, finding that law absolutely repugnant, claimed states’ rights and refused to enforce it. The North was wrong legally, but right morally.

  32. Trying to compare 1) a movement that shows support for the victims of a bombing, with 2) people who fly a flag used by people who committed treason, were explicit, avowed racists, and who enslaved human beings.

    Wow. That is some major league trolling right there. If there was a prize, it could now be claimed.

  33. Mike86,

    We’re good. There’s so much to it. The part about the southern slave owners wanting to get their escaped human property back was amazing.

    But I’m still amazed at how people can think that the Civil War, and the resulting flag and symbol of that war, had nothing to do with slavery. That itself is profoundly ignorant, rude, insulting, demeaning, etc.

    People, just read the Secession Documents, it’s all there. I am still shocked at what was written in those documents. I couldn’t fathom anything like that being serious and for real, but it was, and it was used to go to war. They fought over it, and many hundreds of thousands of lives were lost over it. And to bring it on back, that confederate flag is still a symbol of that part of history. It is history.

  34. Crazy in NY says

    Andy, what exactly is southern pride?
    Go ahead…

    You keep asking this question and implicit in it’s tone is you don’t agree with it.
    Well. tough shi…… Maybe the folks in the North don’t get what southern pride is
    all about and maybe they should stay out of it. You weren’t wringing your hands over it before
    this tragedy but now you seem obsessed. Don’t worry how a southern man feels just
    go and enjoy some racing.

  35. Crazy in NY says:

    “You keep asking this question and implicit in it’s tone is you don’t agree with it.
    Well. tough shi…… Maybe the folks in the North don’t get what southern pride is
    all about and maybe they should stay out of it. You weren’t wringing your hands over it before
    this tragedy but now you seem obsessed. Don’t worry how a southern man feels just
    go and enjoy some racing.”

    Crazy, that’s quite a statement.

    You and Andy have still failed to explain exactly what southern pride and southern heritage are or is. So you have no idea how I feel about it. You haven’t told me what it is yet. Tell me what it is so I can know if I want to stay out of it. Crazy, tell us what southern heritage/pride is so we can get it. Why is that so difficult? Don’t you know what southern heritage/pride is?

    You have no idea how I felt about this issue before this tragedy. None whatsoever.

    Come on Crazy in NY, tell us what southern pride/heritage is. Why can’t you and Andy explain what southern heritage/pride is? The same southern heritage/pride that is represented by the confederate flag.

  36. It’s over people, the flag has been taken down.

  37. Andy Boright says

    Not at my camp site it hasn’t, and it was still flying in Daytona.

  38. Good to know that the Confederate Flag serves a purpose… as a scarlet letter.

  39. Andy Boright says

    Yeah, and what does the stars & strips mean to native Americans?

    I guess that flag shouldn’t be flown at races anymore either because that is an offensive symbol to them representing hate & discrimination.

    It’s scary how little knowledge some self-anointed experts of American history really have.

  40. Andy don’t go there please ,just don’t go there ! LOL

  41. Andy, are the native Americans slaves? Are they owned as property by other human beings? Since you have no idea, let me tell you the answer to that is “NO”. They are sovereign, and supported with millions of dollars every year. They have a pretty good deal. Under the Stars & Stripes.

    Andy, if you feel bad for the native American Indians, feel free to give them your property, and then go back to whatever country your descendants are from. Surprised you are still here.

    The north American Indians were being conquered by the Europeans for about 275 years before the Star & Stripes was even a dream.

    Remember, it was America that ended slavery, that’s just one of the wonderful things that the Stars & Stripes represents. Since you don’t like the Stars & Stripes, leave.

    Do you have little kids, or grandkids, in grammar school? Go ask to borrow their history book. Maybe it will have very few words and lots of pictures and diagrams to help you understand.

  42. I told you Andy I told you !

  43. Jim,

    You learned from Mike86 that there is a HUGE difference between slavery and warring. Right?

    The same thing… conquering and settling the New World by countries such as Portugal, Spain, France, England, etc., long before the United States of America came into existence, had nothing to do with the Star & Bars. That’s grammar school history, ask a little kid.

    Just where did you and Andy go to school?

  44. All these “What about…” questions are totally irrelevant. They’re intended to be distractions. It’s nothing more than trolling.

    – The stars and bars flag was used by the Confederate army as a battle flag
    – What was the South fighting for? White supremacy and the right to own slaves.* The South was opposed to, not in favor of, “states rights.” They viewed that concept (state override of federal law) to be unconstitutional, so they absolutely were not fighting FOR it.
    – After the war, Robert E. Lee told his soldiers to put away their flags; he opposed erecting any monuments to Southern soldiers; his family did not allow Confederate flags or uniforms at his funeral
    – The “Stars and bars” were rarely seen after the Civil War (it was a symbol of treason, after all) — until the Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s. That’s when it was adopted by (guess who!) Southerners committed to fighting the Civil Rights movement.
    – The history is clear. Those people who want to keep flying the Confederate flag are conveying an unmistakable message.

    * Here’s a sample of what Texas wrote in its secession document:

    Texas “was received as a commonwealth holding, maintaining and protecting the institution known as negro slavery–the servitude of the African to the white race within her limits–a relation that had existed from the first settlement of her wilderness by the white race, and which her people intended should exist in all future time.”

    “We hold as undeniable truths that the governments of the various States, and of the confederacy itself, were established exclusively by the white race, for themselves and their posterity; that the African race had no agency in their establishment; that they were rightfully held and regarded as an inferior and dependent race, and in that condition only could their existence in this country be rendered beneficial or tolerable.”

    The documents from other states are readily available online.

  45. Mike86, the concept of States’ Rights has a story. We are both right. States’ Rights were used rather opportunistically.

    Confederates opposed States’ Rights — that is, the right of Northern states not to support slavery. The North refused to support slavery, and that incensed and terrified the South. That was the proverbial “shot across the bow”. It was an abomination to not support slavery, whereas slavery was the precious institution of the South. This was the attitude and position on States’ Rights before Civil War hostilities heated up.

    From the Washington Post: “The South’s opposition to states’ rights is not surprising. Until the Civil War, Southern presidents and lawmakers had dominated the federal government. The people in power in Washington always oppose states’ rights. Doing so preserves their own.”

    The key words in that passage are “Until the Civil War, …” Prior to the Civil War, the use of States’ Rights was the North refusing to support and go along with slavery. Once hostilities began, with Lincoln and the abolitionist movement in power, the South used States’ Rights to attempt to nullify Federal Law, or prepare to head off pending Federal law, that would effectively end the institution of slavery. The South then tried to use States’ Rights to nullify Federal laws that infringed on slavery.

    Completely opportunistic. Or desperation. And when desperate, anything goes.

    The Constitution was a very young concept at the time, and there were persistent arguments over the precedence and extent of State and Federal powers. Keep in mind that prior to the Constitution, each state considered itself a sovereign entity, like its own country. Each state operated as such regarding trading with overseas countries. So there was a struggle over power.

  46. Real:

    I think we’re at least 95% in synch overall on this topic.

    The main issues for me (and, I think, you) are
    1) the downplaying of the fact that white supremacy and slavery were, in fact, central motives in the South leaving the Union; and
    2) the idea that the stars and bars represent some sweet, harmless, rose-colored “Southern heritage”

    That flag represents treason, pain, intolerance and despicable behavior. We let a lot of this be swept under the rug in, I would say, the spirit of reconciliation. It’s a painful topic. But, clearly, in not addressing these issues, we allowed the propagandists to rewrite history.

    The Charleston shooting caused a lot of historians and professors to finally stand up and say, in public forums, “This is wrong. We’ve been teaching myth for too long. Here’s the truth — and it’s ugly.”

    Totally agree with you that the battle flag is now a scarlet letter.

  47. Agreed.

    I do not know all of history, but I have read that nowhere in history has the loser been allowed to partake in the writing of history, as has happened concerning the Civil War. Back in that day, losers would be rounded up and eliminated, at least the leadership. That is the problem here, in that the South has been allowed to obfuscate the real issues, as clearly explained and published in their own Secession Documents, as to why things happened the way they did. And the South has propagated all sorts of deception, distraction, smoke and mirrors, and played the victim card. All teaching of the Civil War must start with the reading of the Secession Documents. Once you read those documents, and realize that they were written by the seceding states, that then becomes the BS meter.

    And to those that are preaching the Confederate Flag represents respect for the fallen family members of the Confederacy, none of your parents or grandparents fought in the Civil War, so you are only fooling yourself. I’m pretty old, and my grandfather was born in 1894. That’s some 30 years after the Civil War. So I’m confident there is nobody alive today with direct descendants that are fallen soldiers of the Civil War that they actually knew. Definitely not those that I’ve seen claiming to be honoring the fallen Confederates.

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