Orange County Register, July 28, 2015

By Meghann Cuniff, Staff Writer

The Mississippi state flag flies among at the Civic Center's Plaza of the Flags in Santa Ana last month. FILE: ED CRISOSTOMO, STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

The Mississippi state flag flies among at the Civic Center’s Plaza of the Flags in Santa Ana last month.
FILE: ED CRISOSTOMO, STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

The Orange County Human Relations Commission on Tuesday announced its support for the removal of Mississippi’s flag from the Santa Ana Civic Center.

The commission has supported the idea since discussing on July 9 a suggestion by Todd Spitzer, chairman of the Board of Supervisors. The flag includes the stars and bars emblem of the Confederacy, which some associate with slavery or racism.

Commission Chair Kenneth Inouye sent Spitzer a letter Tuesday to let him know about the decision.

Inouye wrote that the commission “does not want to deny the historical significance or reality of the Confederacy,” rather it wants to recognize that it’s an example of how our country rejected “things like slavery and the oppression of people based on race.”

“And the symbols of that movement that embraced slavery should be reminders of the road not taken, as opposed to being maintained as if those defeated values were still acceptable today,” according to the letter.

The Board of Supervisors on July 15 voted to remove the Mississippi flag and the 49 other state flags and replace them with flags of Orange County, its 34 cities, the state of California, the United States, the five military branches, prisoners of war and troops missing in action. The Civic Center Authority board authorized the change July 17.

The flags have not yet been switched, but Spitzer told the Register Wednesday he’s hoping to organize a ceremony in coordination with the Orange County Bar Association, which called for the removal of the Mississippi flag last year.

Contact the writer: [email protected]. Twitter: @meghanncuniff