Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.
iReporter Byron Thomas is a proud Southerner and says he should have the right to hang a Confederate flag in his dorm room at the University of South Carolina-Beaufort.
He's also black.
That might seem like a contradiction, but Thomas says he doesn't think the flag is a racist symbol. "Only an ignorant person can make it racist," he told CNN.
Thomas shared his opinion in a video on CNN iReport and it sparked an interesting conversation.
Many commenters defended Thomas' freedom of speech, but others argued that you can't ignore the flag's history.
Cruddy11: "I see the Confederate flag in the same way I see the swastika. At one time it was an Indian symbol of peace if I recall correctly. Now it embodies evil and genocide. The Confederate flag represented the South and its views on slavery. As a black person or African American, I find it offensive."
But uscitizen1tx argued that the Confederacy wasn't the only guilty party in the slave trade.
"If you want to identify a symbol of slavery you should look to the American flag. It is under that flag and the U.S. Constitution that the deplorable act of slavery was codified."
"I was born and raised in Texas and the Confederate flag is offensive to me,"ImagineIt wrote.
I'll congratulate GoGreen58 who has never witnessed any kind of racism. Good for him. He lives a blessed life. But, I have been witness and subjected to much racism over the years. It's disgusting. It's humiliating. It fills you with anger. And, it makes you feel completely inadequate.
The Confederate flag, however you want to justify the use of it, symbolizes America's past with slavery, Jim Crow laws, and issues with racism (especially in the South).
Like it or not, it does.
Thedon216: I understand your point of view on what you believe. But if it offends others then you should also respect that. Some things are not meant to be forgotten. I live in the North but was born in Miami. I look at that flag and think of the many people black and white who fought against that flag, just so you and I could speak like we are today.
But molinechuck says you can't live your life in fear of offending other people.
"In my neighborhood there is an Irish flag, Mexican Flag, Canadian flag, and one I cannot identify. Who cares? Let the guy fly whatever flag he wants. If people are so insecure, self-centered, or self-righteous that they are "offended" by a Confederate flag it is their problem. People choose what they are offended by and we should not live our lives accommodating other people's insecurities."
What's your take? Join the conversation below and in the latest stories on CNN.com. Or sound off on video via CNN iReport.
Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.