dean is just so wrong on this.
and am i still going to support him? probably. but why invoke the confederate flag in a statement about democratic party unity? it seems like idiocy to me.
no matter how much white people who drive around with confederate flags in their pickups -- the people whose candidate dean said he wanted to be -- think they are just expressing their pride at being southerners, they are just plain wrong. dean is at least equally wrong for not thinking of a better way to pull those folks in. the confederate flag is a symbol of racism, intimidation and animosity for everyone except the people who fly it (or stick it to their bumpers. or whatever.). in an underground way, it is probably a symbol of racism for those who fly it as well. it's not an expression of southern pride, it's an expression of white southern pride. it needs to go.
it does not need to be invoked by a supposed progressive running for the highest office in the land. if george bush had said something similar the left would be screaming.
strategically, why play a race card in the south? we should pay attention to what's right and CONCENTRATE ON CLASS, DAMN IT. southern white folks who've defected to the R's are screwing themselves in a major way, and we need to find a nice, effective way to tell them that.