Mis­sis­sippi re­tires its rebel-themed flag

Chicago Sun-Times - - NATION / WORLD - BY EMILY WAG­STER PET­TUS

JACK­SON, Miss. — Mis­sis­sippi of­fi­cials held a cer­e­mony Wed­nes­day to re­tire the for­mer state flag and send it to a his­tory mu­seum, a day af­ter Repub­li­can Gov. Tate Reeves signed a law re­mov­ing of­fi­cial sta­tus from the last state ban­ner in the U.S. that in­cluded the Con­fed­er­ate

bat­tle em­blem.

“We have much to be proud of and much to reckon with,” House Speaker Philip Gunn said dur­ing the cer­e­mony. “This flag has flown over our best and our worst. Some flew it over their brav­ery to de­fend their home­land. And for oth­ers, it’s been a shadow over their strug­gle to be free.”

Mis­sis­sippi will be with­out a flag for at least a few months. A com­mis­sion will de­sign a new one that can­not in­clude the Con­fed­er­ate sym­bol and must have the words “In God We Trust.” Vot­ers will be asked to ap­prove the 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.

ROGELIO V. SOLIS/AP

A Mis­sis­sippi High­way Safety Pa­trol honor guard care­fully folds the re­tired Mis­sis­sippi state flag af­ter it was raised over the Capi­tol grounds one fi­nal time in Jack­son, Mis­sis­sippi, Wed­nes­day.

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