Johnny Cooper claims that “all pillars of our society are just coming off” and he is walking to the nation’s capital to push back against what he sees as a disregard for the US Constitution, according to the Charleston Post and Courier.
Mr Cooper symbolically departed Montgomery, Alabama on 4 July and was as far as Moreland, Georgia by Tuesday night, a distance of about 120 miles. He still must walk about 680 miles to reach Washington.
He told the Post and Courier that his goal was to preserve for his children some of the heritage of “the greatest country to world has ever seen”. He says people who think the Confederate flag is a racist symbol do not understand the history and heritage of the South.
Mr Cooper also said he is walking to oppose the recent Supreme Court decision to legalize same-sex marriage.
The flag has been largely put down since a massacre last month in a Charleston church, in which Dylann Roof, a white man, gunned down nine black parishioners. Mr Roof has since been seen in several photos waving the Confederate flag as a symbol of racist hate.
Mr Cooper said that tragedy should not define the history of the flag, adding that, “If I had been there, I would have shot him myself”.
As Mr Cooper is headed toward DC on-foot, he will pass through South Carolina, where lawmakers are considering the removal of the Confederate flag from the grounds of the State House.
The state Senate already approved its removal and the House on Wednesday will take up the bill. If the House approves it, the bill will go to the desk of Governor Nikki Haley, who has said she would sign it and remove the flag from state grounds.
“I’d like to think that South Carolina, being one of the strongest representatives of the South, would have enough common sense to resist the political correctness and inanity of it all,” Mr Cooper said.
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