Luke Bryan is a good ol' country boy at heart, but he understands why things are changing across the country when it comes to the Confederate flag.

The debate over the flag re-ignited in the wake of the recent racially-motivated mass shootings in Charleston, after pictures of the shooter with the Confederate flag emerged online. Bryan grew up in rural Georgia, and his songs still draw heavily from the imagery of the South. But while the debate over the Confederate flag is still raging in many quarters — even after the South Carolina legislature voted to remove the flag from display on the grounds of the state capitol — the superstar acknowledges that it has become a divisive symbol, and that removing it is just part of social change.

"We're sitting here on the day the Supreme Court ruled on gay marriages," he tells Billboard. "Where I grew up, I never understood the Confederate flag to be a negative thing. But if the Ku Klux Klan is going to walk around and turn the Confederate flag into their deal ... It's become a symbol of racism to a majority of people. And we live in a country where we have to listen to people's opinions and work it out."

John Rich also weighed in on the matter during a recent appearance on Hannity, saying he only cares about the American flag. “And I think that’s the end of the argument right there. I think we can go on ad nauseam about this forever. If something’s bringing pain, or if something is bringing something that somebody uses for hate like that, I mean, I just don’t see the point of continuing to go forward with it.”

Will Hoge recently released a song titled "Still a Southern Man" that he wrote and recorded in order to deal with his own complicated feelings about the flag and its history, while Charlie Daniels posted a long and passionate dissertation about the Confederate flag online.

Biggest Stories of 2015 (So Far)

Country Artists Wearing the American Flag