Driver Retires Because NASCAR Banned the Confederate Flag
After the devastating death of George Floyd, an international movement against systemic racism and racial prejudice among police had NASCAR thinking about what they can do to fight racial injustice.
This past Wednesday, NASCAR released this statement on the Confederate Flag: “The presence of the confederate flag at NASCAR events runs contrary to our commitment to providing a welcoming and inclusive environment for all fans, our competitors and our industry. Bringing people together around a love for racing and the community that it creates is what makes our fans and sport special. The display of the confederate flag will be prohibited from all NASCAR events and properties.”
NASCAR has been asking fans to stop bringing Confederate Flags to events since 2015 when white supremacists, Dylann Roof murdered 9 African-American churchgoers in South Carolina. They have finally had enough and has officially prohibited the Confederate Flag from all of their events.
While it is still unclear what the punishment will be for breaking this rule, many believe perpetrators will be given a lifetime ban from all races and events.
NASCAR has been making strides towards progression and racial understanding all week. Bubba Wallace Jr. has been a proponent for the Black Lives Matter Movement and asked the organization to ban the Confederate Flag from events on Monday.
Wallace has changed the design of his car to reflect his views on racial injustice. The car is now painted all black, has a black and white hand shaking hands on the hood, and has #BlackLivesMatter printed on the side.
However, not all drivers are on board with this progressive stance. Ray Ciccarelli announced Wednesday that he would retire from racing after they announced their ban on the Confederate Flag.
Ciccarelli stated the following in a now-deleted Facebook post.
“i don’t believe in kneeling during Anthem nor taken ppl right to fly what ever flag they love. I could care less about the Confederate Flag but there are ppl that do and it doesn’t make them a racist all you are doing is f**king one group to cater to another and i ain’t spend the money we are to participate in any political BS!!”
Cicarelli, age 50, has competed in 32 races with 0 wins and 0 podium finishes. Cicarelli will retire after the end of the 2020 season.
Ciccarelli will not be missed as sports, and the world as a whole continue to progress.
Pierson Scheinberg is a student who lives in California, and attends the College Preparatory School. Pierson lived in Baltimore, Maryland until August 2017 when he moved to the Bay Area. Pierson is an avid golfer who enjoys watching all sports. He is a writer and sports analyst for At the Buzzer.