*As you know there’s been a lot of debate and action regarding removal of the Confederate flag, as of late.
In South Carolina the talk has been especially intense because the shooter of 9 unarmed black people who were praying at a Charleston church photographed himself with the flag as a symbol of his White Supremacist beliefs.
In the meantime, Governor Nikki Haley and other politicians have called for the removal of the flag from state grounds, but so far it hasn’t happened.
Enter one Bree Newsome, 30, of Charlotte, NC. She (like a lot of black folk) is tired of waiting and took matters into her own hands Saturday morning.
Newsome – a youth organizer – was halfway up the more than 30-foot steel flagpole just after dawn Saturday when State Capitol police told her to come down. Instead, she continued up and removed the flag before returning to the ground.
The woman and a male associate who had entered the wrought-iron fence surrounding the flag were arrested.
Activist Mervyn Marcano told the Guardian that when Newsome returned to the ground she and James Ian Dyson were arrested by capitol police and taken to a detention center.
Sherri Iacobelli, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Public Safety, told the Associated Press Newsome and Tyson, 30, also of Charlotte, had been charged with defacing monuments on state capitol grounds, a misdemeanor that carries a fine of up to $5,000 and a prison term of up to three years, or both.
“The flag represents white supremacy,” said 25-year-old Tamika Lewis, another activist from Charlotte. “The image alone is used to ignite fear and intimidation, especially among people of color and minorities.
“Taking it down is a long time coming.”
The flag, which is protected by state law, was raised again a short time later. A rally by flag supporters was scheduled for later Saturday.