NASCAR announced on June 10 a ban of the Confederate flag at all events. Some fans expressed their displeasure about this announcement while others took their complaints to the skies. Several reporters noticed a plane flying above Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday afternoon, pulling a Confederate flag and the message: "Defund NASCAR."
FOX Sports reporter Bob Pockrass posted photographic evidence of this statement on Twitter. He was not at the track for the Geico 500, the first event that will allow 5,000 fans to attend, but reported on the situation from home. The fans in attendance will have to avoid flying the Confederate flag on their RVs or their vehicles. NASCAR is still examining the different methods of enforcing the new ban, but one option is forcing the fans to leave if they do not comply with the new policies.
Here is a view that shows where the Confederate flag is flying with the message “Defund NASCAR” pic.twitter.com/4tQpUnJxfh— Bob Pockrass (@bobpockrass) June 21, 2020
"'We don't care about NASCAR anymore. Look, I'll show you by spending hundreds of dollars and dedicating hours of my time solely to NASCAR to show you how little I care about it now' I always knew racists were dumb but this one really takes the cake," one fan responded on Twitter. They continued by expressing frustration about the uproar surrounding a "failed country" that lasted a mere four years.
While many fans made comments about the decision to fly a Confederate flag from the airplane, others asked a different question. They wanted to know why Pockrass was posting the photo on social media. These Twitter users didn't want other people to draw inspiration by Sunday's demonstration and the extra exposure, leading to similar actions in the future.
"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," NASCAR said in a statement announcing the flag ban. "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."
This decision to make the change followed driver Bubba Wallace appearing on CNN. He asked NASCAR to remove the Confederate flag from events to help all fans feel more comfortable while attending races. Wallace recognized that banning the flag would anger a lot of fans, but he believed it to be necessary.