A school board meeting in Effingham County, Georgia, devolved into chaos on Tuesday night when attendees began protesting the local NAACP’s call for the high school to remove Confederate symbols.
The Effingham NAACP led a group of residents to ask the Effingham County board of education to stop using the Confederate flag, change the school mascot from the “Rebel,” and alter the school fight song referencing “Dixie,” according to Savannah television station WTOC.
“We have come to make a petition to right the wrong that should have been corrected 60 years ago,” Effingham NAACP President Leroy Lloyd said at the meeting.
But according to WTOC, the “overwhelming majority” of attendees at the meeting protested the NAACP petition.
“You try to erase my heritage, you try to erase anything you think is racist. But the whole time you were up here, sir. I apologize, but everything you said was racist,” resident Stanley Carter said at the meeting, according to WTOC.
Multiple people were nearly arrested as they let out cheers and boos throughout the meeting, according to WTOC.
School Superintendent Randy Shearouse told The Augusta Chronicle that the school changed its logo from a Rebel character to the letter “E” 20 years ago and that the school does not have a mascot. However, Effingham County High School displays two signs depicting Confederate soldiers, according to The Augusta Chronicle. Students also wave Confederate flags at sporting events.
During the school board meeting, Bishop Franklin Blanks of First Union Baptist Church displayed attire for the school’s sports teams that depict a Confederate soldier and use the word “Rebels,” according to The Augusta Chronicle.
The board of education did not reach a conclusion on the petition during Tuesday’s meeting, but will consider feedback and decide at a later time, according to WTOC.
Watch the WTOC report below:
WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather
H/t Crooks and Liars