Charleston Tragedy: S.C. Governor Pushes For Confederate Flag Removal, 150 Years Later

The confederate flag, long a symbol for the racism of the Civil War’s South, and all that the South fought for during the Civil War, could soon be retired.

According to Yahoo! News, South Carolina governor Nikki Haley(R), along with South Carolina Republican senators Lindsay Graham and Tim Scott, and dozens of other voices, have called for the confederate flag be removed from a war memorial site near the South Carolina statehouse.

South Carolina was the last state to remove the confederate flag from the top of the statehouse in 2002, only after it was agreed to move that confederate flag to the war memorial where it currently flies.

Five days after the white supremacist gunman Dylann Storm Roof opened fire in the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church and killed nine black churchgoers, and almost 150 years after the Civil War ended, calls for that confederate flag to be taken down have reignited and grown louder.  The height of the issue happened when Gov. Haley ordered all state flags be flown at half-staff in honor of the nine lost lives.  The confederate flag, however, is said to be fixed in the position it is in, so it cannot be lowered.

A Haley spokesperson explained that “in South Carolina, the governor does not have legal authority to alter the flag. Only the General Assembly can do that.”

South Carolina republican senator Doug Brannon announced that he has created legislation to have the confederate flag removed for good. “It’s coming down this summer,” Brannon said.

A protest was held this past Saturday, attended by hundreds of South Carolina residents, calling for the confederate flag to be removed. Even the infamous, including former presidential candidate Mitt Romney, chimed in on his Twitter feed. “To many, it is a symbol of racial hatred,” Romney wrote. “Remove it now to honor #Charleston victims.”

Romney received an agreeing response from President Barack Obama, who tweeted back, “Good point, Mitt.”

None of our current presidential candidates would make themselves available for comment.

Upon his capture, Roof had the confederate flag on his car’s license plates. Pictures of Roof waving the confederate flag and burning the American flag have been surfacing since his arrest, along with what is believed to be his manifesto.

Graham said, during an interview, “It is part of who we are. The flag represents to some people a civil war. To others it’s a racist symbol, and it’s been used by people in a racist way.”

NAACP President Cornell Brooks said,“When we see that symbol lifted up as an emblem of hate, as a tool of hate, as an inspiration for hate, as an inspiration for violence, that symbol has to come down.”

Featured image via The Grio

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