'We're not a racist department': North Carolina firefighters refuse to take down Confederate flag after funding pulled
Confederate flag waving on the wind (Shutterstock)

Firefighters in North Carolina will continue to fly a Confederate flag over their taxpayer-funded fire house despite the fact that their political choice could financially devastate the department.

Montgomery County Commissioners gave notice to the Uwharrie Volunteer Fire Department that displaying the divisive racial symbol would cost the department dearly in terms of county funding, The Courier-Tribune reports.

“It has come to represent oppression and hate, bigotry," noted county manager Matthew Woodard.

Firefighters at the department, however, are claiming that they are not racist, yet are so committed to the cause of slavery and secession by the Confederate States of America that they are choosing the flag over the safety of the community they are supposed to protect.

"The flag is not hurting a thing," volunteer firefighter Lee Hudson told NBC 11. "We are not a racist department. We are not in any way. Members or the department as a whole."

"We would love to work with the County and for them to support us," said Hudson. "But, we're not going to move on the issue of taking down the flag."