HATTIESBURG, MS – Not long after South Carolina brought down the Confederate battle flag from state capitol grounds this morning, the Mississippi NAACP and a group of about 30 Mississippi clergy members commended South Carolina lawmaker, and called on Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant to follow suit.
Here’s a statement from Mississippi NAACP President Derrick Johnson:
“We now call on Governor Phil Bryant to follow South Carolina’s lead and remove the Confederate battle symbol from the Mississippi State Flag. We appeal to Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant to recognize the moral urgency for Mississippi to move without delay towards our next phase of progression and to write the next chapter of our history.”
Governor Bryant’s office says he’ll stick to his original statement on the subject:
“Mississippians have already had a discussion about the state flag. It was put to a vote and an overwhelming majority chose to keep the flag.”
Edward Allegretti, a member of Sons of Confederate Veterans, references his proud display of the confederate flag and Mississippi state flag, “I’ve never once had anybody and no black people, and I deal mostly with black people in my work, ever assume offense make a negative comment or think ill of me.”
Allegretti says he does not support Hattiesburg Mayor Johnny DuPree in his removal of the state flag from city buildings, “Why would he take our flag down? It’s his flag. It’s our flag. It’s all Mississippians flags whether they’re black or white.”
Mayor DuPree had the flag removed from city property shortly after the Charleston church shooting in respect for the victims’ families.
We reached out to Mayor DuPree’s office to find out if and when the Mississippi flag will fly again.
We received no comment.