1. The flag as it’s seen today was rarely even used in the Civil War or beforehand.
During the Civil War, the Confederate states went through three different official flags. None of them are the flag currently debated today. The original confederacy began with the “Stars and Bars” flag that had a blue field in the upper left corner, three red and white stripes, and seven white stars in a circle. After complaints that the flag resembled the Union’s flag too closely, the Confederacy changed and revised the flag twice more. The version Dylan Roof and others now proudly wave is the third and last version of the flag that was flown by Robert E. Lee’s army for only a short time before the South surrendered.
This begs the question of why a barely used battle flag is now defended as the symbol of southern heritage. In fact, the modern-day Confederate flag only really started gaining popularity around the South during a different historical period a century later: the civil rights movement.