Several groups, including the Sons of Confederate Veterans, are planning a “High Noon” rally on Tuesday to tell the Legislature not to remove the Confederate rebel emblem from the state flag. It’s a pre-emptive strike. No such legislation exists, but it’s expected.
They probably needn’t worry. I’m sure there will be much flag debate this session, but I’d put my money on the Legislature — if in the end it does anything — punting this to a referendum, letting the masses vote as they did in 2001. That’s what Gov. Phil Bryant and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves have recommended — put it on the ballot for the 2016 presidential election. There’s also a pro-flag change group pushing for a referendum.
This is a bad idea.
As Yoda would say to the Legislature: change the flag, or change it not. But a referendum you must not have.