In the aftermath of the Charleston shooting, much of the attention has been focused on the culture that may have caused suspect Dylann Roof to have white supremacist views. This attention has included the Confederate flag, which continues to fly in South Carolina. When the flags were ordered to half-staff, the Confederate flag has remained at full-staff. However, that is because the Confederate flag, due to state law, can only fly at the same height of thirty feet. It is padlocked into place and cannot be moved.
In 2000, there was a fight in South Carolina to remove the Confederate flag. While the larger flag was removed, it was not a total victory for the activists. The South Carolina Heritage Act mandated that all landmarks and honors to the Confederacy would remain untouched. Any changes would require a two-thirds vote by the state legislature.
Now, politicians are making their positions clear on the Confederate flag. While many Southern politicians have and continue to defend the flag as part of their history and symbol of states’ rights, others say that its place is in a museum. They attack it as a symbol of hatred and racism.
President Obama, through White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest, feels that the flag belongs in a museum.
Presidential candidate Jeb Bush (R) tweeted his opinion, bringing up that as Governor of Florida, he had the flag moved into a museum.
Former presidential candidate Mitt Romney (R) tweeted that the flag was past its time and that the flag on the South Carolina Capitol should be removed. He said it should be removed to “honor” the victims. At the time of publication, his tweet had over 34,000 retweets and close to 35,000 favorites.
Take down the #ConfederateFlag at the SC Capitol. To many, it is a symbol of racial hatred. Remove it now to honor #Charleston victims.
— Mitt Romney (@MittRomney) June 20, 2015