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With a pen stroke, Mississippi drops Confederate-themed flag

With a stroke of the governor’s pen, Mississippi is retiring the last state flag in the U.S. with the Confederate battle emblem - a symbol that’s widely condemned as racist.

7/1/2020 1:29:00 AM

With a stroke of the governor’s pen, Mississippi is retiring the last state flag in the U.S. with the Confederate battle emblem - a symbol that’s widely condemned as racist.

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — With a stroke of the governor’s pen, Mississippi is retiring the last state flag in the U.S. with the Confederate battle emblem — a symbol that’s widely condemned as...

Republican Gov. Tate Reeves on Tuesday signed the historicbillthat takes the 126-year-old state flag out of law, immediately removing official status for the banner that has been a source of division for generations.“This is not a political moment to me but a solemn occasion to lead our Mississippi family to come together, to be reconciled, and to move on,” Reeves said in a statement. “We are a resilient people defined by our hospitality. We are a people of great faith. Now, more than ever, we must lean on that faith, put our divisions behind us, and unite for a greater good.”

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ADVERTISEMENTMississippi has faced increasing pressure to change its flag since protests against racial injustice have focused attention on Confederate symbols.Abroad coalition of legislatorson Sunday passed the landmark legislation to change the flag, capping a weekend of emotional debate and decades of effort by Black lawmakers and others who see the rebel emblem as a symbol of hatred.

The Confederate battle emblem has a red field topped by a blue X with 13 white stars. White supremacist legislators put it on the upper-left corner of the Mississippi flag in 1894, as white people were squelching political power that African Americans had gained after the Civil War.

Critics have said for generations that it’s wrong for a state where 38% of the people are Black to have a flag marked by the Confederacy, particularly since the Ku Klux Klan and other hate groups have used the symbol to promote racist agendas.Mississippi voters chose to keep the flag in a 2001 statewide election, with supporters saying they saw it as a symbol of Southern heritage. But since then, a growing number of cities and all the state’s public universities have abandoned it.

Several Black legislators, and a few white ones, kept pushing for years to change it. After a white gunman who had posed with the Confederate flag killed Black worshipers at a South Carolina church in 2015, Mississippi’s Republican speaker of the House, Philip Gunn, said his religious faith compelled him to say that Mississippi must purge the symbol from its flag.

ADVERTISEMENTThe issue was still broadly considered too volatile for legislators to touch, until the police custody death of an African American man in Minneapolis, George Floyd, set off weeks of sustained protests against racial injustice, followed by calls to take down Confederate symbols.

A groundswell of young activists, college athletes and leaders from business, religion, education and sports called on Mississippi to make this change, finally providing the momentum for legislators to vote.Before the governor signed the bill Tuesday, state employees raised and lowered several of the flags on a pole outside the Capitol. The secretary of state’s office sells flags for $20 each. A spokeswoman for that office, Kendra James, said Tuesday there has been a recent increase in requests from people wanting to buy one.

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During news conferences in recent weeks, Reeves had repeatedly refused to say whether he thought the Confederate-themed flag properly represents present-day Mississippi, sticking to a position he ran on last year, when he promised people that if the flag design was going to be reconsidered, it would be done in another statewide election.

Now, a commission will design a new flag, one that cannot include the Confederate symbol and must have the words “In God We Trust.” Voters will be asked to approve the new design in the Nov. 3 election. If they reject it, the commission will draft a different design using the same guidelines, to be sent to voters later.

Said Reeves in signing over the flag’s demise, “We are all Mississippians and we must all come together. What better way to do that than include “In God We Trust” on our new state banner.”He added: “The people of Mississippi, black and white, and young and old, can be proud of a banner that puts our faith front and center. We can unite under it. We can move forward —together.”

Read more: The Associated Press »

Just say it’s racist for chrissake. Grow a backbone and update your stylebook/editorial criteria. 👏 I like it My favorite news of the day All glory to God. Racism has not worked for the USA and it is past time for us to admit it. This administration is beating a dead horse. I am frightened by the number of Americans that celebrate losing the Confederacy as a win!

We are committed to saving lives. Please like or even share if you think we are doing the right thing for our family and yours. Thank you so much and stay strong America...leadership comes from within! Took them long enough Awesome! Better late than never. Now, with a stroke of a pen, we must remove realDonaldTrump ASAP.

A racist symbol... fixed it for you Thank you TateReeves for being on the right side. Actually the Georgia state flag is still basically the “stars and bars” or the national flag of the Confederacy. So there’s that too. So long overdue Burn that damn Flag.. It needs to die a horrible death because of what it stands for..And also burning up the Klu Klux Klan at the Same time..

Yeah, of course they did. Democrats are trying to white wash their role out of the civil war and their acceptance and implementation of slavery this election cycle as they always do!!! Where are their masks? It is about time! This battle was fought and won by the confederacy 155 years ago. Well it's better late than never, it's hard to understand but l hope that ugly flag doesn't express how the people of Mississippi are today

WHEW...now that we are united...oh wait, you have even MORE demands...LOL, Chamberlin thought he achieved 'peace in our time', but alas, Hitler had other ideas...ESPECIALLY because of Chamberlins weak, spineless 'diplomacy' “Widely condemned as racist.” No sorry It’s racist. Plain and simple. Finally getting out of the 18th century!!!

About GD time! It’s completely ridiculous that the south is still hanging on to their racist past! carynmiller2 Republicans attacks on Healthcare caused this. We reach out for help to go viral to secure His Aftercare fund. No insurance due to 'pre-existing conditions', simply 🔄, please, that's all, just a 🔄 helps so much! Thanks!! JamesNewHeart JamesNewHeart

mississippi’s got the last confederate battle flag emblem, but georgia’s flag is basically just the stars and bars. it needs to go too Good for them! A side note on the USA FLAG BY A VETERAN. WHAT IT MEANS TO HER Ah yes. Just as fire is widely considered to be hot. The real question here is why it took so long to do something so obvious CancelTheConfederacy BlackLivesMatter

Happy Wednesday! Simply put, ignore all the hate speech online. Just block out the negative. Surround yourself with the positive. Sing your song. My living motto. It’s time to make it illegal to display this tool of treason Now that wasn't so hard, was it? 😑 In 200 years HS history teacher will say 'After the confederacy was defeated it took over 160 years to take the treasonous battle flag out of official use' and kids will wonder why it took so long

I struggle with applauding them for finally doing this, under the enormous weight of our current affairs. I’m glad they did it but it should have been done ages ago. Again, it’s a good move, just long overdue. 'In God We Trust' Because they don't can't give up ALL of their white supremacy BS. Bravo to Mississippi, but there are a whole lotta white folks in that state who will double down on their racism now! SMDH.

Yeah but they’re putting “in god we trust” on the new one. Just can’t have a flag that doesn’t exclude someone Georgia I PASSED GAS THE OTHER DAY AND SOMEBODY WAS OFFENDED. THEY WEREN'T GOING TO PUT UP WITH MY SH&T. Now I can visit HB their DMV? Still on license plates BLM See how easy it was to do the right thing, America?

Last as usual citizenyid Considering they didn't ratify the 13th Amendment barring slavery until 2013, they got rid of the confederate flag pretty quickly. 🤔 Fixed it! Just say racist. Not “widely condemned as” Racist. Mississippi is just about ready to join us in the 21st Century. Too bad it had to skip the 20th Century first, but better late than never, right?

Good.. it should’ve been gone in 1865. But not a fan of tearing down the statue of George washington. Why the fanfare? This is a National shame, the confederate battle flag alongside old glory, the dirty south ideology that it wasn’t about race, and the economy it brought to bear, finally the stain of the traitor legions has been removed.

Hoooray!!!! Racism is over!!!! Morons buckling under pressure...you can always restore it later on America has fallen. thank god. Congratulations misssissippi Mississippi will never be able to live down its ugly racist reputation. It's what the state is famous for, nothing else. Drove thru there on a recent road trip. Filled up on ⛽ well before & wouldn't even stop to PEE in Mississippi. One of America's Most Ugly & Embarrassing.

Confederate-themed? It’s a confederate flag! 👏👏👏 Georgia next It took Republicans to take the flag off of SC and Mississippi. Democrats are the party of KKK Jim Crow Segregation ChelseaClinton Problem solved! The price of retired Mississippi Flags just went up a 1000%... Redneck racist stock market....

I wonder 🤔 how many monuments of Hitler r in public areas of Germany? Yet: Were not millions killed during white mans Native American genocide? Slavery? By lynching & unjust laws? Women burned, beat, raped? We r better, let's honor the better ppl before US & the road ahead. Finally...at last! It is racist. It is white supremacist. Just say it.

ChelseaClinton pedophile “A symbol that’s widely condemned as racist”? Really calling it like it is I guess those would look very pretty surrounding the White House Now all they have to do is reform their hearts and minds. That’ll only take another 3 generations. So close with that tweet and yet so far away.

ChelseaClinton 'Retiring'? That's a flag that we should absolutely burn to ash. 🔥 Yay! Alas. Ok great now fix the police. Georgia's state flag is almost identical to the first Confederate national flag. If people feel better, that’s a good place to start. For those that don’t, please remember that the flag, any flag, is representative of the people. The institutions the flag represents mean nothing without the people. Don’t forget, no matter what you feel. People matter.

ChelseaClinton Nothing like a dictator taking away the rights of the people to vote on issues to get today's Progs all cheering. So they'll just replace it with a cross. sarcasm Cool. Can we get rid of Hawaii's Union Jack flag now? Very sad and disgusting Go Republicans... ChelseaClinton ChelseaClinton remember when your dad enacted that Confederate Flag Day in Arkansas. I do, it was in the 90s. It was the day after Easter and there was $100 fine for violating it. Can you ask your dad if that law still in effect… also Ask what Epstein’s island is like too! thx

that shit better be burned. Being the fattest, dumbest, and poorest I guess the next flag will be a white square. We have just given up. ChelseaClinton Well I think we will lose the American and National Athem We want you all to know that America today is on bended knee, Yet this nation stands with the good people of Mississippi as we celebrate the retirement of the Confederate flag. Mississippi, we can hear you, the rest of the world hears you, and posterity will hear all of us whnevr

This should really bring down the crime rate ChelseaClinton FINALLY!! That flag was NOT my family’s heritage NOR pride. Most people know the Civil War began in 1861 between the northern union-states & several southern states wanting to 'secede from the union'. The issue of slavery began in 1862 by the north in order to enlist black men because there weren't enough white volunteers.

About time! Sad to history so maligned. Someone should send AP reporters back to school. AlwynElderberry ChelseaClinton The Senate just passed a bill allowing foreign campaign contributions so next year Alabama's flag will include a star and sycle. We need bigger changes. How do you plan on saving the arctic? Installing an ice machine?

Good... ChelseaClinton It's hard to believe a State stiil had the symbol of an enemy and traitor to the United States on its flag That's a start for the still backwoods, 19the century state. Congratulations Free America “: With a stroke of the governor’s pen, Mississippi is retiring the last state Confederate flag in U.S. ..'

It’s actually treasonous, which is equally or worse. They dis that to please these monsters See what happens when you are last in literacy, takes 150 years to find out you lost ❤😍 'Two of Mississippi’s top elected Republicans proposed Wednesday that the Confederate battle emblem be replaced on the state flag with the words “In God We Trust,” Attorney General Lynn Fitch LynnFitchAG Lt. Gov. Delbert Hoseman DelbertHosemann 😷

Retiring the flag but keeping the racism? ChelseaClinton Correction - a symbol that IS racist Great. Now let’s do Planned Parenthood. It’s time to end the death sentence of the unborn! ChelseaClinton That sorry-ass governor did not have a choice. Absolutely it is. Overdue. Ok nerds Mississippi...last in education, last to let go of Confederate flag 🤷🏼‍♂️

It's only Racist in Liberal minds! Boy, that took a while. Are we going to ignore the Arkansas flag? I see a flag that is flown at state capitals and Federal government that offends me and my values can I petition for it tobe removed? And to think there have been attempts to change this flag for over two decades. Say what you will about riots, but they get shit done.

So long overdue. Good job! ap you might want to refer to the ap style book and just say racist Ah yes symbolic victories over real institutional reform. PS Georgia's state flag is actually styled after the flag of the Confederacy, Mississippi is styled after the Battle Flag of Lee's Army. Nobody is ever happy.

Surprising. They always vote with it. Took long enough, and even with all that is going on, half of the republicans still voted to keep the old flag...smh... It will be replaced with watermelon Mississippi finally found out the Civil War ended in 1865 (in 2020?) Confederate flags are dumb because they lost, but just giving in to mob tantrums at a whim isn't good either.

The next hurdle is the issue that the new flags have to be made in CHINA which comes with all those wonderful exploitation problems. Yay! A victory. It’s about Fn’ time.. what was the hold up?! Thank goodness! One less symbol of hate! Whew 😅. That should make everything better. Good job useless political bobble heads.

2020 isn’t all bad. This will go down in the history book. Finally! Great! Now let's target swastikas and ALL hate groups!!! Bipartisan support to get rid of it, anyone upset is either: 1) racist 2) ignorant of history The “KARENs” have been SOCIALIZED for CENTURIES..that the WORLD 🌎 is theirs...and the WORLD 🌎 revolves around them! It is DIFFICULT to UNLEARN what you have been taught from birth!

Hopefully Arkansas is next. That diamond isn't fooling anyone. and replacing it with the mccarthy-era 'in god we trust' Next! Now do Georgia.

With a pen stroke, Mississippi drops Confederate-themed flagWith a stroke of the governor’s pen, Mississippi is retiring the last state flag in the U.S. with the Confederate battle emblem — a symbol that’s widely condemned as racist. Republican Gov. Tate Reeves on Tuesday signed the historic bill that takes the 126-year-old state flag out of law, immediately Why didn't they vote on it? MS. Is Now Run by the American Taliban! IDIOTS

Mississippi governor signs bill into law removing Confederate symbol from state flagUPDATE: Mississippi governor signs bill into law removing Confederate symbol from state flag. Finally Making progress. Keep fighting.

Mississippi Legislature Passes Bill to Change State FlagThe legislature in Mississippi , the last state with the Confederate battle emblem on its flag, voted by a wide margin Sunday to change the state’s flag after 126 years. WSJ is not legitimate media. They (WSJ) R a tentacle of the Murdock disinformation machine. “The WSJ's Trump problem”-'Dozens have left paper in the past yr & interviews w/ current & ex-staffers show outrage over pressure from management 2 normalize Trump” Big deal Do you agree ?

Mississippi lawmakers vote to remove the Confederate symbol from state flag - Business InsiderBusiness Insider is a fast-growing business site with deep financial, media, tech, and other industry verticals. Launched in 2007, the site is now the largest business news site on the web. Democratic flag is coming down You mean the state’s republican majority voted to remove it? finally

Mississippi lawmakers vote to remove rebel emblem from flagJACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi lawmakers voted Sunday to surrender the Confederate battle emblem from their state flag, triggering raucous applause and cheers more than a century after white... I can come up with something way better than that! Good on ya, Mississippi!!💕👍💕

Mississippi lawmakers vote to remove Confederate emblem from state flag Mississippi lawmakers have voted to remove a symbol of the pro-slavery Confederacy from the Deep South state's flag, the latest symbol of racism to come down amid outrage at the police killing of George Floyd, a Black man, in Minnesota. 👏👍👏👍👏👍👏👍👏👍 *GOP lawmakers