Politics

Florida's Marion County Decides to Raise Confederate Flag Back Up

July 7th 2015

By:
Kyle Jaeger

Even after state senators voted to remove the Confederate flag from the South Carolina statehouse this week—the final tally was 37-3 in support of the measure—commissioners in Marion County, Florida have expressed opposition to the national movement, voting unanimously to reinstate the flag at a county government complex following its temporary removal last Thursday in light of controversies surrounding the Charleston shooting.

"The commission discussed how to best display all of the flags in their proper historical context," Marion County spokesperson Stacie Causey said in a statement to ATTN:. "To this end, they gave consensus for staff to work with the Marion County Historical Commission to determine opportunities for historical interpretation of the display, as well as other history markers on the McPherson complex." 

"This will help identify opportunities for connectivity and education about local history within the complex grounds," Causey added. 

Watch the raw footage of the contentious flag raising, via WFTV, here: 

From the South Carolina legislature to NASCAR, support for the expulsion of what many consider an offensive, Civil War-era symbol of racism has rapidly grown to include bipartisan lawmakers and corporate sponsors alike. A week after nine members of the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston were gunned down by alleged shooter and self-identified white supremacist Dylann Roof last month, South Carolina governor Nikki Haley pushed for the flag's removal, launching a statewide debate over its continued use on government property and beyond.

 
Gov. Nikki Haley's Words About the Confederate Flag

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Posted by ATTN: on Monday, June 22, 2015

"[We] are not going to allow this symbol to divide us any longer," Haley announced at a press conference. "The fact that people are choosing to use it as a sign of hate is something we cannot stand. The fact that it causes pain to so many is enough to move it from the Capitol grounds—it is, after all, a Capitol that belongs to all of us." 

According to local reports, residents' reactions are mixed. 

"I think it should be removed," resident Monaco Benjamin told reporters at News 13 Orlando. "What value does it have to us now? That was years ago, and so many things have changed." 

On the other side of the debate is local resident John Horrigh, who argued that "[the Confederate flag] is part of our common and shared history," as he watched the flag raised over the McPherson complex once again. "History is not always pretty, but it remains as our history. It's back where it should be."