It was a sight at the State House Wednesday, and it was hard to miss for people on the ground like Brad Warthen.
“One of my coworkers said ‘Hey, come out and see this,'” Warthen said. “Basically, it had a small plane, it looked like maybe a Piper two-seater or something like that, pulling a large Confederate battle flag.”
The group responsible said it flew the flag to commemorate Confederate Memorial Day is called The Virginia Flaggers, and it’s headquartered outside Richmond, VA.
“Virginia Flaggers, that is the name of our group, because we have formed out here in Virginia, but we have Virginia Flaggers all over the South. In South Carolina, we have a whole bunch of them,” group spokesperson Barry Isenhour explained.
“There was a compromise about the flag in South Carolina in 2000, and it was highly unsatisfactory. Then, in 2015, there was no compromise. The legislature decided overwhelmingly that what we would do is take it down,” Warthen said. “What does somebody in Virginia have to do with what we decide to do in South Carolina? That’s up to us.”
The Virginia Flaggers said then-Governor Nikki Haley dishonored Confederate veterans when she led that charge. The group now insists that its latest display was about honoring the history and wasn’t an “in your face” tactic.
The group said it isn’t done in the Palmetto state. They are planning to erect flags around the state on highly-visible plots of private property near busy highways.
“We already have the sites planned, and as I mentioned, we don’t really put the dates out ahead of time,” Isenhour said. “As I mentioned to you before, because of Murphy’s Law, being able to get things all arranged, get the permits proper, get the flag poles built.”
Warthen, meanwhile, said if they want to do that they should do it in Virginia.
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