Saturday, October 31, 2020
Home Indian Diaspora Nikki Haley demands the removal of 'secessionist' flag

Nikki Haley demands the removal of ‘secessionist’ flag

Washington: One hundred and fifty years after the end of the American civil war, South Carolina’s Indian-American Governor, Nikki Haley, finally added her powerful voice to growing demands for removing the rebel Confederate flag from the State Capitol.

Public pressure to remove the red flag with a blue diagonal cross with 13 white stars representing the secessionist states breaking away from the American Union over the issue of slavery peaked after the horrific massacre in a historic black church in Charleston last week.

Hundreds marched in South Carolina over the weekend seeking removal of the Confederate flag from its perch after Dylan Roof. The 21-year-old white man who allegedly came to the church “to shoot black people” and “start a race war” was seen in photographs with a gun waving the flag.

“Today we are here in a moment of unity in our state without ill will to say it is time to remove the flag from our capitol grounds,” said Haley, daughter of Sikh immigrant parents from India and the state’s first non-white Governor.

“This flag, while an integral part of our past, does not represent the future of our great state,” said the two-term Chief Executive of the state that had led the way out of the Union on December 20, 1860, six weeks after the election of Abraham Lincoln as president.

By March 1861, emboldened by South Carolina’s example, six more states — Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas – also seceded to form the Confederate States of America or the Confederacy. The flag once flew atop the State Capitol, but by a 2000 compromise it was moved to its location in front of the state legislature. The flag can only be removed from there with the approval of two-thirds of the General Assembly.

Haley said if the legislature doesn’t convene on the matter in this last week of the legislative year, she would call up lawmakers to the capital “under extraordinary measures.”

President Barack Obama, who will travel to Charleston Friday to deliver the eulogy for one of the victims, Clementa Pinckney, the church’s pastor and a state senator, has said the flag should be removed and placed in a museum.

South Carolina’s two Republican senators Lindsey Graham and Tim Scott, were also alongside Haley at the announcement. Though they did not speak there, they both backed the governor’s call. Graham, who is seeking the Republican presidential nomination, said in a statement that “after the tragic, hate-filled shooting in Charleston, it is only appropriate that we deal once and for all with the issue of the flag.”

The Republican House speaker of Mississippi, also, unexpectedly declared in a statement on Monday night that the Mississippi state flag, which includes the Confederate banner, “has become a point of offense that needs to be removed.”

Most Republican presidential candidates had earlier hesitated to weigh in on the flag issue as South Carolina is an early and crucial primary state. But Haley’s decision helped them cut their tacit support of the Confederate flag.

Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and Ohio Governor John Kasich, quickly expressed their support for Haley, hailing her calls for the flag’s removal as the right decision.

Walmart, the country’s largest retailer, announced that it would remove items bearing the Confederate flag from its stores and stop selling them online. Sears Holdings made a similar announcement.

Calling the Confederate flag a “Symbol of Hatred”, the New York Times said Haley had “acted in the interest of her state and the nation” with her call to remove the flag from the State Capitol grounds.

Saying that the Confederate battle flag is not worthy of respect, The Washington Post added, “It is a symbol of secession and opposition to civil rights and, hence, should be removed.”




Most Popular

Menstrual Dysfunction Prevalent in Young Athletes

Researchers, including one of Indian-origin, have found that menstrual dysfunction is more prevalent in young athletes than among non-athletes of a similar age. The study,...

Spinning Keeps You Energized and Your Mind Focused

One of the most popular cardio work-outs in North America, Latin America, Europe, and other parts of Asia, and a current global phenomenon, rhythm-based...

Change in Indian Healthcare Industry is Need of the Hour

With all the chaos created due to the pandemic, a change in the Indian healthcare industry is the need of the hour, feels Anita...

Food Habits to Follow if You Have Arthritis

Arthritis is an autoimmune disease that affects joint and bone pain. It could be a problem or a matter of concern, If not taken...

New Mask Aiming to Make Wearer Less Infectious

People wear face masks to protect others -- not merely to protect themselves. With this in mind, researchers have developed a new concept for...

Cognitive Disorders Increase Risks of Developing Severe COVID

Researchers have claimed that dementia and other cognitive disorders now appear to be the risk factors for developing severe COVID-19. The findings, published in the...

Localized Content Driving New Customers in Amazon Prime Video

Riding on localized content being churned out in countries like India, the number of Prime members who stream Prime Video grew by more than...

Cheerful People Likely to Experience Less Memory Decline

People who feel enthusiastic and cheerful -- what psychologists call "positive affect" -- are less likely to experience memory decline as they age, say...

Recent Comments