Tags: tom petty | confederate | flag | stupid

Tom Petty: Confederate Flag Marketing Use 'Was Downright Stupid'

By    |   Wednesday, 15 Jul 2015 09:22 AM

Tom Petty has penned an essay expressing his views on the Confederate flag issue, calling his past use of the banner "downright stupid" in a Rolling Stone piece published Tuesday.

In the '80s, Petty used the Confederate flag to promote a single called “Rebel,” which is sung from the view of an individual who still blames the North for life’s troubles, according to Ultimate Classic Rock. Once the singer saw fans at his show wearing bandanas and other gear with the banner, he came to regret the use of the symbol.

“I said, 'Look, this was to illustrate a character [in the song ‘Rebels’]. This is not who we are. Having gone through this, I would prefer it if no one would ever bring a Confederate flag to our shows again because this isn't who we are,” Petty wrote, referring to a speech he made at a concert when someone threw a Confederate flag onstage.

While his disassociation got mixed reaction, Petty recalled how he never again saw the Confederate flag at a concert following his announcement.

“But honestly, it's a little amazing to me because I never saw one again after that speech in that one town. Fortunately, that went away, but it left me feeling stupid,” he said.

Petty even removed a photo from the 1985 concert album “Pack Up the Plantation: Live” because it showed his band the Heartbreakers playing in front of a Confederate flag backdrop, Ultimate Classic Rock reported.

A native of Florida, Petty said he knew the Confederate flag is the “wallpaper of the South,” but he calls for his fellow Southerners to look at the issue through the eyes of African Americans.

“People just need to think about how it looks to a black person,” he said. “It's just awful. It's like how a swastika looks to a Jewish person. It just shouldn't be on flagpoles.”

Petty instead urges people to look beyond the flag issue and toward problems he believes are of heavier importance.

“We're living in a time that I never thought we'd see,” Petty said. “The way we're losing black men and citizens in general is horrific. What's going on in society is unforgivable. As a country, we should be more concerned with why the police are getting away with targeting black men and killing them for no reason. That's a bigger issue than the flag.”

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Tom Petty has penned an essay expressing his views on the Confederate flag issue, calling his past use of the banner "downright stupid" in a Rolling Stone piece published Tuesday.
tom petty, confederate, flag, stupid
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2015-22-15
Wednesday, 15 Jul 2015 09:22 AM
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