The way I see it, there are only 3 groups that have any legitimate claim to use the CSA Battle Flag or so-called Rebel Flag for “heritage”:
1) The United Daughters of the Confederacy because it was their male ancestors who fought;
2) The Sons of Confederate Veterans for the same reason; and
3) The Military Order of the Stars and Bars, whose male ancestors were officers in the CSA military.
Anyone else, including government entities, that use that flag have no right to use it. It was not the flag of the Confederacy — it was the flag of some of the Armies. It certainly was not the state flag of any of the current states in the USA. Unless you have a personal connection to an ancestor who fought in one of those armies, it is not part of your heritage.
Now, here’s the thing. The SCV allows members of the KKK to join and to be officers in their local groups (Camps). I know this from personal experience, as I was in the SCV when a Camp member revealed that he was in the Klan and they went ahead and elected him anyway. The national SCV may well claim they are for heritage not hate, but as they allowed the KKK to join with them, that claim is invalid.
And the MOSB is just a subset of the SCV, so they are stained with the same racist taint.
The UDC are generally very nice ladies, but, let’s be honest, a lot of them believe that any history of the Civil War is full of lies unless it was written in such a manner that it praises the South. Some of them seem to think that Gone With the Wind was a documentary.
During my several years in the SCV, dealing with members of the UDC and the MOSB, I never found one of them who did not subscribe to white supremacy, the deep-seated belief that white people are better than black people. While this is a form of chauvinism and all of us are chauvinists at times, you can not be a white supremacist and not be a racist.
In short, the CSA Battle Flag does not belong to every person who claims it as part of their “heritage.” And the people who have a legitimate claim to it are racists.
Even if this were not true, it has been a symbol of racist violence for decades. An entire race of people have been taught to fear it as a symbol of terror. Why would any decent person want to inflict terror on a fellow American?
It is past time to move the flag off state grounds and into museums.