When Canton Alderman Dr. Ralph Hamlett recently proposed a parade entry policy that would limit inappropriate speech during the town’s two annual parades — and in effect limit the display of the Confederate Flag — it understandably generated a substantial amount of negative comments.
When a policy that would prohibit the display of the Confederate flag in a tiny mountain mill town’s municipal parades was first proposed, it was immediately identified as both a sensitive cultural issue and a thorny Constitutional question that cast the Western North Carolina municipality as a microcosm of the complex national debate over the role of Confederate imagery in society today.
Each year, one of the highlights of the 10-day Folkmoot Festival is the Parade of Nations. This year, 10 groups from across the globe walked down Waynesville’s Main Street, stopping at the Historic Haywood County Courthouse to perform for local dignitaries. Cory Vaillancourt photos
Snowflakes sprinkle the high peaks, while a stiff breeze cascades into the valleys. Elaborate decorations are being put up in downtowns across Western North Carolina. It’s that time of the year — Christmas is around the corner and the region is gearing up for their annual parades.