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After banning the flag, begins more difficult work for NASCAR

After banning the flag, begins more difficult work for NASCAR

NASCAR’s decision, which banned the Confederate flag from its races and properties, made headlines. Stars from actress Reese Witherspoon to Saints running back Alvin Kamara praised this motorsport series for vetoing a symbol long associated with slavery and racism.

But now comes the hard part.

In a matter of days, NASCAR will be faced with a tough question: How will it enforce the ban on sprawling road courses once spectators are allowed to return and RVs begin to park on weekends when there are race?

About 1,000 members of the military will be able to witness Sunday’s race near Miami. They will be the first spectators allowed in a NASCAR competition since March, when the coronavirus pandemic brought the sport to a standstill.

Issues in enforcing the ban will be most visible on June 20 and 21, when the series holds races in Talladega, Alabama, where as many as 5,000 fans will be allowed in. It was common to see Confederate flags at that headquarters, located in the south of the country, the heart of NASCAR.

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“Certainly that will be a challenge. We will try to deal with it in the right way, ”said NASCAR Executive Vice President Steve O’Donnell, interviewed Thursday on SiriusXM satellite radio. “We will anticipate this, just as we have today, by letting people know that we are in favor of displays of pride for America, which can wave the American flags and their drivers in style on the track. But if we see something else displayed there, we are going to have to react and we will. We will give more details, but I trust that we will do it in an intelligent way ”.

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Credit for the move was given by several drivers to Bubba Wallace, the only black competitor in NASCAR, who lobbied for the flag to be banned. Years of bad publicity and slow reactions to the controversial brand evaporated within 48 hours, once Wallace publicly condemned this relic from the dawn of NASCAR.

“I’ve seen too many comments and stories from fans attending a race for the first time. The first thing they’d say in years past was, ‘I’ve looked at the Confederate flag and I’ve been uncomfortable,’ “Wallace told a television show. “We shouldn’t make anyone feel uncomfortable.”

Wallace finished 11th at Martinsville Wednesday night, hours after the ban was announced. He drove a car that has the motto “Black Lives Matter” painted on it. On the hood, the words “Compassion, love and understanding” could be seen.

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“It was really nice to see what Bubba was able to do,” said 2018 NASCAR champion Joey Logano. “He should be proud of the movement he has generated for the African-American community in our sport. He always has, just to be here, but when you see the comments he made on CNN the other day and then the response from NASCAR comes in, you realize that everyone has gained kudos from this. ” AP (HN)

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