Early this morning, a multiracial group of Carolinians led by teachers and activists took down the Confederate flag from the South Carolina capitol grounds — within an hour the state had raised the hateful banner once again in time for an white supremacist rally. Bree, the Black woman who climbed the pole and cut down the flag, was arrested and taken into custody by Capitol Police. She should be promptly released from jail, any charges should be dropped, and the legislature should immediately vote to permanently remove the flag.
According to a statement from the activists they took down the flag because:
"We could not sit by and watch the victims of the Charleston Massacre be laid to rest while the inspiration for their deaths continue to fly above their caskets."
The Confederate flag was born out of a government defending the enslavement of Black people and resurrected as an emblem for whites violently opposing racial integration. Any government that recognizes the flag is declaring that it cherishes a history of racial terror. Taking down the flag is just one step but one that strikes a blow at the visible symbol of white supremacy. Make no mistake about it, however, racism isn't just a flag or words it's baked into our economy and inequities in our democracy and criminal justice system.
In Bree's own words:
"It's time for a new chapter where we are sincere about dismantling white supremacy and building toward true racial justice and equality."
South Carolina officials have sided with white supremacists in choosing to restore the flag before a planned rally. The legislature must immediately vote to permanently remove the Confederate flag from the capitol and all state buildings.This is a petition to sign to drop the charges against Bree and her companion.