Confederate symbolism becomes more visible

Published: Feb. 28, 2014 at 7:07 PM EST|Updated: Mar. 5, 2014 at 7:07 PM EST
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The huge Confederate flag on Willis Still Road, near 1-75 North, Tift County
The huge Confederate flag on Willis Still Road, near 1-75 North, Tift County

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - There are many Georgia license plates bearing the Confederate emblem of the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

The "SCV" specialty license plate has drawn criticism from some, like state representative Tyrone Brooks, who compares the Confederacy to the Nazis of Germany.

Though Governor Nathan Deal told CNN: "I don't think that it is something that we should be so concerned about. Hopefully, those who take offense at it will look at the fact that it is a part of a cultural heritage of our state."

WXIA TV reports that over 10,000 of the tags have been sold since its introduction in 2003.  Since the state nets $45 a year per tag, just in renewal fees, that's almost half a million dollars a year the tags generate for Atlanta. Critics of the SCV aren't likely to eradicate the car tags, because the state's addiction to money trumps all.

And if you think you're also seeing more, and larger, Confederate flags across the countryside, you're right.   It's part of an effort by the Sons of Confederate Veterans to mark the sesquicentennial of the War Between the States, and to promote Southern Heritage, the group says.

Critics aren't likely to make any headway if they take on the flags either. They are on private property.

The SCV says that sites selected for the existing flagpoles have been sold, deeded, leased, and loaned to the SCV by the original owners.   A 180 square foot Confederate battle flag is now prominent on US Highway 19 in Mitchell County, south of Albany.

But the SCV is pretty much in your face with a 1,500 square foot flag just north of Tifton, right beside I-75. The pole that holds it towers 120' above the terrain.

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