Tiny battle flag remains on Grady square - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Tiny battle flag remains on Grady square

The flag is about one-foot square The flag is about one-foot square
Chairman Lafaye Copeland Chairman Lafaye Copeland
Resident Walter Lewis shares his opinion over the flag. Resident Walter Lewis shares his opinion over the flag.
Emma Fortner Emma Fortner
Many folks differed in opinion, causing a battle of words. Many folks differed in opinion, causing a battle of words.
CAIRO, GA (WALB) -

A tiny battle flag that's stirred up controversy in Cairo will remain flying next to a Confederate Veteran memorial. The Grady County commissioners voted to keep the flag during a special called meeting this afternoon.

Grady county Commission Chairman LaFaye Copeland began a called meeting this afternoon, addressing whether to keep the miniature battle flag flying under a Confederate Monument next to the courthouse. A flag she says has split in the community.

"I don't want this to happen. I don't want us to be divided. I want us to be as one," she said.

But as soon as citizens were given the opportunity to voice their opinions, it turned into battle of words. "Let's just remain calm and keep order," she told the crowd.

And after commissioners each spoke their peace, they took a vote. "Take a vote.  All in favor? Aye.  Any opposes? Nay."

Four against one, voting to keep the flag flying, under the responsibility of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. 

Paul Forrester helped put the flag there and says he's happy with the outcome. "That flag was carried by my great, great grandfather who fought," he said.  "And I'm very proud of what he did. It has nothing to do with the racial divide, it's to honor our veterans."

But not all residents agreed. "We only had one black that's on the board that voted against it. So how is that an equal vote?" asked Emma Fortner.

The commissioners added that even though they never voted to place the flag on the monument in the first place, the county attorney gave them permission to vote on its future today.

Copyright  2015 WALB.  All rights reserved.

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