Walton County Residents Petition to Remove Confederate Battle Flag

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WALTON COUNTY-- The Confederate battle flag means something different to everyone.

"It's all about our heritage, and it is not particularly the flag that is important to us, it is to honor our ancestors," said Carolyn Brown, a member of the Daughters of the Confederacy.

Carolyn Brown and her husband have family who died in the Civil War, and are remembered at the Confederate Memorial at the Walton County Courthouse in DeFuniak Springs. But next to that monument flies the Confederate battle flag, a flag that has been a topic of discussion in the county for years.

"This particular flag has nothing to do with the Confederate States of America, it was just a battle flag," said Brown.

While this flag means pride and heritage to Brown, others find it "disrespectful."

"The Confederate flag there is a battle flag, and it tells us we are still in a battle when we go into court and everything like that, we are still into a battle about trying to get our rights," said Raymond Jackson, Northwest Florida Branch President for NAACP.

A group of Walton County residents, and members of the NAACP started a petition to have the flag removed. They hope enough signatures will prompt the commissioners to take it down.

"We need a unifying symbol," said Daniel Uhlfelder, a local attorney, and a concerned citizen. "And I think going to the courthouse, and seeing the flag is not something that makes people comfortable."

If County Commissioners do decide to remove this flag from the courthouse, they could potentially have two options. Their first would be to donate the flag to the Heritage Museum in DeFuniak Springs. And their second option would be to put it in a display case right next to the Confederate Monument.

"Whether they remove the flag or not, it is not going to change history," said Brown.

The Confederate monument is maintained by the Heritage Museum, while the flag is maintained by the county.

Walton County Commissioners will be discussing this issue with the public at their July 14th meeting at the South Walton Courthouse Annex.

If you would like to sign the petition to remove the flag, you visit the link below: https://www.change.org/p/walton-county-commissioners-remove-the-confederate-flag-from-the-walton-county-courthouse

And if you would like to sign the petition to keep the flag, some residents started that petition Friday afternoon, you can also visit change.org and search "Keep The Confederate Flag Flying"