Representative plans to sponsor bill to ban Confederate flag
JEFFERSON CITY - A Missouri representative announced Thursday he plans to sponsor a bill to ban displaying the Confederate flag on state-funded grounds.
Rep. Joshua Peters, D-St. Louis City, said a state law is needed so the decision about whether to fly the Confederate flag in the future is not left to the person who holds the governor's office.
"Current State Law does not bar the flying of the Confederate flag on government funded property. We need to make it clear that the State of Missouri will not subject its citizens, or visitors, to a symbol of oppression, hatred, and racial intolerance," said Peters.
Peters said the flag was removed in 2003 by former Governor Bob Holden. He also said Governor Blunt then order the flag to be flown at the site of the Confederate Memorial Historic Site in 2005.
"Modern reproduction Confederate flags do not need to be flown or displayed at publicly-owned and taxpayer-supported sites, nor trotted out by state employees in honor of a separate Confederate Memorial Day," Peters said. "As an alumnus of Lincoln University, which was founded by African American Civil War Veterans, the Confederate flag did and has come to symbolize racial intolerance and oppression. It is time to turn the page of history and prove our state has truly moved on."
Peters said he also believes the Confederate flag only belongs in museums. The representative is also endorsing a proposed name change to Confederate Drive in Forest Park by the City of St. Louis and Mayor Slay's proposal to move the Confederate Memorial.