Bubba Wallace Predicts Cops Will Not Pepper NASCAR Fans Protesting Confederate Flag Ban

Bubba Wallace, the only full-time NASCAR black driver, predicted on Friday that if fans protest the Confederate flag circuit ban, officers are unlikely to hit them with tear gas or rubber bullets like Black Lives protesters. Matter.

“They are your rights for a peaceful protest, my man. It’s a part of it, “said Wallace.” But you won’t see them inside the racetracks where we are having fun with the new fans who are buying their tickets, buying the clothes of their favorite drivers. You won’t see it flying there.

“It is exactly what you see on the flip side of everything that happens and in the cities as they peacefully protest,” he continued. “But you won’t see the cops spraying them with pepper and shooting them with rubber bullets, will you?”

His comments come after NASCAR announced two weeks ago that the Confederate flag would be banned from its events, a move that sparked a backlash from fans in the South who often display the symbol at races.

NASCAR’s decision came in response to nationwide protests demanding an end to systemic racism and police brutality after George Floyd, an unarmed black man, died in political custody. The protests, which have continued daily since Floyd’s death and have been held in all 50 states and Washington, DC, have been mostly peaceful despite some instances of violent clashes with the police.

In many cases, the video shows officers deploying tear gas, flashes, rubber bullets, and other tools at protesters to disperse crowds, including cases where protesters were peaceful. The use of those tools has been controversial, causing some cities to ban the use of tear gas.

Wallace’s comments on Friday come as NASCAR fans have already expressed some frustration with the new rule change.

On Sunday, a pro-Confederation group flew a small plane with a Confederate flag and a “Defund NASCAR” sign over Talladega Speedway in Alabama, where Wallace had previously found a tie in his assigned garage. The FBI and NASCAR later determined that the rope was not part of a hate crime, but had been in the garage for months.

Still, the incident has generated controversy and new racism questions from fans of the sporting event.