DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — NASCAR bans display of the Confederate flag at its events and properties.
The move by NASCAR comes after it has faced heavy criticism for allowing Confederate flags at its sporting events.
With the sport having a deep connection to the southern United States — including its headquarters in Daytona Beach, Florida — the flags can be seen at the stock car races.
NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace, who is African American, called out the organization earlier this week and asked that it consider banning Confederate flags.
Wallace — who wore a black T-shirt with the words “I Can’t Breathe” at Sunday’s race — seized the moment and issued his most compelling comments yet on the topic of race and racing: “My next step would be to get rid of all Confederate flags.”
“There should be no individual that is uncomfortable showing up to our events to have a good time with their family that feels some type of way about something they have seen, an object they have seen flying,” Wallace told CNN. “No one should feel uncomfortable when they come to a NASCAR race. So it starts with Confederate flags. Get them out of here. They have no place for them.”
A black NASCAR official took a knee before Sunday’s race near Atlanta in what may have been a first for the series, and the governing body vowed to do a better job of addressing racial injustice.
"Our country is in pain and people are justifiably angry, demanding to be heard. The black community and all people of color have suffered in our country, and it has taken far too long for us to hear their demands for change. Our sport must do better. Our country must do better," NASCAR's president Steven Phelps said to media after the race in Atlanta.
After George Floyd's death at the hands of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin and other officers who stood by, massive protests were sparked in all 50 states and around the world as people demanded an end to police brutality against people of color.