College students in Mississippi are confronting the national legacy of racism and slavery in a new battle over the display of Confederate symbols. The student government at the University of Mississippi will vote today on whether to seek removal of the state flag from campus grounds. The flag features the Confederate battle symbol in its upper left corner—the only state flag in the country that continues to use the design. It’s the latest Confederate symbol to be targeted for removal from a public space since a white supremacist killed nine African-American worshipers in Charleston, South Carolina, four months ago. Alabama and South Carolina have already taken down the Confederate flag on capitol grounds. Removing the flag would be particularly significant for the University of Mississippi, where in 1962 white students rioted over the registration of African-American student James Meredith, an incident that became a flashpoint in the civil rights struggle. Allen Coon, president of the University of Mississippi College Democrats, and Dominique Scott, secretary of the university’s chapter of the NAACP, discuss the student-led effort to remove the flag from campus grounds.
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