Society

University Of Mississippi Takes Down State Flag Due To Confederate Symbol

| by Nicholas Roberts
Mississippi state flagMississippi state flag

The state flag of Mississippi will no longer fly over the University of Mississippi campus.

'Ole Miss' Interim Chancellor Morris Stocks signed an order to remove the flag from campus, which was fulfilled on Oct. 26.

The Mississippi state flag contains a Confederate battle emblem, and many students had previously advocated for its removal.

The banner will be sent to the university's archives, according to the Associated Press.

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"As Mississippi's flagship university, we have a deep love and respect for our state," Stocks said in a statement. "Because the flag remains Mississippi's official banner, this was a hard decision.

"I understand the flag represents tradition and honor to some. But to others, the flag means that some members of the Ole Miss family are not welcomed or valued."

The Mississippi state flag has contained the Confederate battle emblem in the upper left corner since 1894. Residents decided to keep the flag during a statewide vote in 2001.

The public display of the Confederate Flag came under increased scrutiny, after the June massacre of nine black churchgoers at a parish in Charleston, South Carolina. The gunman charged with the shootings, Dylann Roof, had posed with the flag in multiple pictures online before the massacre took place.

The removal of the flag came after the student body senate voted 51-13 to take it down, Inquisitr reports.

The University of Mississippi has a history of racial discord, according to AP. In 1962, deadly riots erupted when James Meredith enrolled as the first black student at the university. While sports teams are still called the Rebels, a mascot thought to resemble a 19th-century plantation owner was retired several years ago.

"The University of Mississippi community came to the realization years ago that the Confederate battle flag did not represent many of our core values, such as civility and respect for others," Stocks said. "Since that time, we have become a stronger and better university.

"We join other leaders in our state who are calling for a change in the state flag."

Sources: Inquisitr, AP via MSN / Photo Credit: CBS News/Twitter