Monday, January 11, 2021
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi will officially have a new state flag next week, featuring a magnolia and the phrase, “In God We Trust.”
Republican Gov. Tate Reeves will sign a bill Monday to update state law with a description of the flag, his spokeswoman said Friday. Immediately after the signing, officials are scheduled to have a ceremony to raise the new flag at the state Capitol.
It has been just over six months since legislators retired the last state flag in the U.S. that included the Confederate battle emblem — a red field topped by a blue X with 13 white stars.
Critics had long said the flag adopted in 1894 was a racist symbol that failed to represent a state with the largest percentage of Black residents in the nation.
Momentum to change the Mississippi flag built quickly last summer as protests against racial injustice were happening across the nation. A commission designed the magnolia flag, and the single design went on the November ballot. Voters approved it by a wide margin. Putting it into law is the final step of making the flag official.