Bree Newsome sparked a national debate in 2015 on Confederate monuments and symbols and their place in modern American society when she scaled a 30-foot flagpole in South Carolina and removed the Confederate flag from state Capitol grounds. Her action followed the massacre of nine African-American parishioners by a white supremacist at a Charleston church in South Carolina. As police yelled for her to come down, she grabbed the Confederate flag and said, "You come against me with hatred … I come against you in the name of God. This flag comes down today." Footage of the event went viral and was seen around the world. The next month, state legislators voted to remove the Confederate flag permanently, following mounting pressure.
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