By BRIAN NIEMIETZ
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
JAN 15, 2020
A Virginia school board voted to allow students to wear the Confederate battle flag on their clothes.
Penny Blue, the sole black member of the eight-person Franklin County School Board, was alone in voting to ban the symbol, according to ABC News.
The star-filled blue X over a red background, also knows as the Dixie Flag, flew over the southern army that fought to secede from the Union and maintain slavery as the law of the land from 1861 to 1865.
Blue argued that the divisive flag represented white supremacy. The non-black board members in the 87% Caucasian county reportedly argued that banning the divisive totem could violate students’ rights to freedom of expression.
Superintendent Dr. Mark Church said he doesn’t like seeing kids donning the Confederate flag in school and that it’s his “wish students wouldn’t wear it,” enforcing a ban would present a “significant disruption” during the school day.
Franklin County is located in southwest Virginia, which joined the Confederacy in April 1861 at the outset of the Civil War. More than 32,000 Virginians died in that conflict, according to the Library of Virginia.
Virginia drew international attention in 2017 when white nationalists groups converged on the town of Charlottesville to protest the removal of Confederate war hero statues. President Trump claimed there were “fine people” on both sides of the violence that ensued.
Virginia is the only former Confederate state that did not support Trump in the 2016 election.
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