Kevin Battle: Now Let’s Get Rid of the Hawaii State Flag

Kevin Battle
June 30, 2020 - 9:11 am
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Can we end the Revolutionary War already?  Or at least ONE state’s seemingly blatant loyalty to the UK?

I say this as another state is finally cleaning up Confederate imagery from its flag.  I know.  You think I got the wars mixed up.  Bear with me.

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Since 2003, Mississippi had been the lone holdout of Confederate imagery on its flag.  The Magnolia State is now ready to take a third crack at an official banner.  

This after state lawmakers finally passed a resolution to suspend the flying of the divisive red, white and blue horizontal bar flag emblazoned with a canton featuring a Confederate battle flag.  

The ’Stars & Bars’ were adopted by many as a symbol of the South during Reconstruction - a source of historic pride for some.  The image made a resurgence during civil rights struggles of the 1950’s & 60’s.  It is a pariah due to the pain and divisiveness that some attribute to it or due to the nefarious desires of extremist groups that have seized it for their own.  Others see it was a rallying call for state’s rights.  The flag’s history is complicated. 

It was originally known as the battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia.  A rectangular version was used by the Army of Tennessee.  The Mississippi state flag had flown for 106 years.  

The state’s little-known original flag was adopted in 1861.  It had a white ground whose upper left corner featured a blue field with a white star and a Magnolia tree at its center.  The White ground was surrounded with red trim.  The Magnolia flag became ‘null & void’ in 1865.

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Mississippi did not fly an official state flag again until 1894 when the now-infamous second flag detailed above was adopted.  It was repealed by the state legislature on Sunday, June 28, 2020.  Governor Tate Reeves has indicated that he will sign the bill into law.  A new banner, that would include the motto ‘In God We Trust’, will be voted on by citizens in the Fall.

There are several options already up for consideration and more may be added.  Some of the them include: The State Hospitality or Stennis flag, the Mississippi Bicentennial flag, and a new version of the Magnolia flag.

OK.  Now you can rewind a bit further to the Revolutionary War!  

What is up with state #50?!  The only island state in the Union (no offense Rhode Island.)  The only US state located outside of North America.  I’m looking at YOU Hawaii!

I love ya!  You are PARADISE.  You are the best, babe.  But your banner is, uh, awful….offensive…and UnAmerican.  Or, at the very least it is Stockholm syndrome-ish.  We can get you help for that.  You can do better. 

Now, I know that you have an independent streak, as well.  In fact, some of your residents want to secede.  Who can blame you?  Your 1959 statehood vote apparently did not even include an option for independence.  Plus, we know that you are not fond of us Mainlanders.  But, the Feds have apologized for the overthrow of Queen  Lili’uokalani in 1893.  So, do you really have to fly a state flag featuring the BRITISH Union Jack?  C’mon!

After a long struggle the 13 colonies finally pushed them out in 1783.  So, show some love.  Ditch the Brits.  

Adopt a flag with a little less ‘fish n’chips’ and a little more ‘Aloha.’  Please?

Regardless, I hope to visit you again soon. 

Have a great day! 

Kevin Battle is co-host of the KDKA Radio Morning Show with Larry Richert.  The show airs M-F 5a-9a on NewsRadio 1020 KDKA.
 

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