Can I speak for all Northerners for a second (or at least the East Coast Northerners)? Even the most hard-core conservatives among us feel very uncomfortable about the Confederate flag... I know the bumper stickers say "It's about heritage and not hate"...but the heritage IS one of hate.
I have friends here (fellow Yanks) that thought I was joking when I told them down South you guys (still) call the Civil War the "War of Northern Aggression" --then people called it that here on this page and validated my stories...(Thank you!)
So there you have it. The flag scares us. To us it says hate, the side that lost, pro-slavery, low rent, and redneck. How's that for tough love?
The reason that I was thinking about all this is because a 15 year old girl (Candace Hardwick) in South Carolina is suing her high school because they won't let her wear confederate clothing. Gosh, can't you just picture Candi (with an "I") all decked out in her Dixie Girl gear? ;)