Ole Miss removes state flag with Confederate symbol

26 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Ole Miss removes Mississippi flag with Confederate emblem.

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The University of Mississippi removed the state flag on its Oxford campus Monday morning because the banner contains the Confederate battle emblem, which some see as a painful reminder of slavery and segregation. The action came days after the student senate, the faculty senate and other groups adopted a student-led resolution calling for removal of the banner from campus. “As Mississippi’s flagship university, we have a deep love and respect for our state,” Stocks said in a statement Monday. “Because the flag remains Mississippi’s official banner, this was a hard decision.

However, the public display of Confederate symbols has been subject to heated debates since the June massacre of nine black worshippers at a church in Charleston, South Carolina. But as my colleague Tyler Bishop pointed out last week, the most common defense of the Confederate flag—that it’s about “heritage, not hate”—doesn’t “recognize all the rich and varied aspects of Southern heritage that the flag fails to represent.

That is why the university faculty, staff and leadership have united behind this student-led initiative.” He urged state leaders to create a new flag for Mississippi. Sports teams are still called the Rebels, but the university several years ago retired the Colonel Rebel mascot — a white-haired old man some thought resembled a plantation owner. But Mississippians remain divided on the flag’s future, and many politicians have been loathe to stake their own positions as the governor and most state lawmakers seek re-election Nov. 3. Phil Bryant, said he wouldn’t call a special session this year to debate it, saying it’s a matter for Mississippians themselves to decide in another statewide election.

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