Confederate Flag

A sign indicates a no-student drop-off zone with Wake County public school buses in the background.
Brian Batista / For WUNC

A North Carolina public school system has revised its dress code to prohibit the Confederate flag, Ku Klux Klan symbols and swastikas.

Bree Newsome is a community organizer and activist from Charlotte
Courtesy of Bree Newsome

Note: This program is a rebroadcast from January 9, 2017.

Activist Bree Newsome gained national attention in the summer of 2015 when she was arrested for scaling the flagpole at the statehouse in Columbia, South Carolina, and removing the Confederate flag. The act of civil disobedience took place in the wake of the killing of nine African-American people at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C.

An image of community organizer Bree Newsome
Courtesy of Bree Newsome

Note: This program is a rebroadcast from January 9, 2017.

Activist Bree Newsome gained national attention in the summer of 2015 when she was arrested for scaling the flagpole at the statehouse in Columbia, South Carolina, and removing the Confederate flag. The act of civil disobedience took place in the wake of the killing of nine African-American people at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C.

Jeff Tiberii / WUNC

Winding through the intense green of the Uwharrie National Forest is a country road. At a gentle curve on state Highway 109, the speed limit drops from 55 to 45 mph, cars slow down slightly and a symbol of the American South flaps in the breeze.

Thomas Brown studies landmarks of Confederate memory such as the flag, shown here flying at the South Carolina capitol before it was taken down this summer.
eyeliam / Flickr Creative Commons

The Confederate flag has been around for more than a century, yet the controversial symbol has been in the headlines almost every week this year. South Carolina removed the flag from their state grounds this summer after the shooting of churchgoers in Charleston, but the debate over Confederate symbols has continued across the nation.

Historian Thomas Brown has studied landmarks of Confederate memory around the country and examines what they can teach us about Americans’ changing political, social, and economic positions.

The pick-up trucks and cars adorned with Confederate and American flags flapping in the air were hard to miss as they rolled down Franklin Street.

As the caravan came to a stop, one woman got out of her truck with a flag wrapped around her waist. Others sported rebel caps and Confederate t-shirts.

An image of the Orange Co. Historical Museum
Orange County Historical Museum

 

More than a thousand organizers are expected to gather in Hillsborough Saturday afternoon as a part of a “Southern Heritage Ride/Rally” supporting the Confederate flag.

A Confederate soldier statue is a part of a larger monument outside the North Carolina Capitol
Daderot / Wikimedia Commons

The North Carolina House of Representatives has tentatively approved a bill that could make it more difficult to take down the state's Confederate statues.

A Confederate monument
Daderot / Wikimedia Commons

The shooting of nine African-Americans earlier this month has prompted national debate over whether the Confederate battle flag should continue to fly at the South Carolina Capitol.

Gov. Nikki Haley called for the flag to be taken down while President Obama said it "represented more than just ancestral pride" during the eulogy of Rev. Clementa Pinckney Friday.

Sons of Confederate Veterans specialty license plate
North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles / https://edmv.ncdot.gov/VehicleRegistration/SpecialPlate/Detail?PlateID=62#term=

Two of the most powerful officials in the state are pointing fingers at each other in a dispute over who has the authority to stop the production of Confederate license plates. Governor Pat McCrory and Senate Pro Tem Phil Berger claim to lack the authority to mandate that the DMV to no longer issue the controversial plates.

An Instagram photo posted by a teenager was the reason dozens of people showed up to Thursday’s Chapel Hill-Carrboro school board meeting.

The photo, which has made several headlines, features two girls waving North Carolina regiment flags at a school field trip to Gettysburg. Many say the photo has been interpreted out of context, but for others it speaks to larger issues of racial insensitivity and inequality in the school system and community.

A screen shot, shown above, shows the post and comments before they were taken down.