Fri., April 22, 2011 1:09pm (EDT)

Flag Causing Controversy
By Josephine Bennett
Updated: 3 years ago

MACON, Ga.  —  
Confederate battle flag flies next to a monument at the Dodge County Court House (photo courtesy City of Eastman)
Confederate battle flag flies next to a monument at the Dodge County Court House (photo courtesy City of Eastman)
On Monday the State of Georgia commemorates Confederate Memorial Day. And 150-years after the Civil War, people in Middle Georgia are still arguing about a controversial flag.

The former state flag of Georgia, which once served as a Confederate battle flag, flies among several war memorials at the Dodge County Courthouse.

In 2002 the Dodge County Commission voted to fly it on Confederate Memorial Day. But it’s flown every day since. Lifelong resident John Battle, who is black, says he has no objection to it being flown on the Confederate holiday. But seeing it year-round brings back bad memories.

“I lived here when it was the days that you had to go in the back door, when you had to go upstairs to the movies, when you couldn’t go in the front door. I’ve been through all that.”

Battle’s attorney sent a letter to the Dodge County commission. In response, this week the commission formally voted to fly it year-round. Members of the commission did not return requests for comment.