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State Rep. calls for Stone Mountain boycott over Confederate flag | News

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State Rep. calls for Stone Mountain boycott over Confederate flag

ATLANTA (WXIA) -- Stone Mountain Park is home to one of the biggest fireworks shows in the state of Georgia. But just days before Independence Day, a Georgia state representative is calling on Georgians to boycott Stone Mountain Park this weekend, and everyday until the park removes its Confederate flags.


"At a state-owned and state-run park that operates under Georgia code, we need something that represents all of us," said Rep. LaDawn Jones (D-62).

Jones said, that "something" is not the Confederate Battle Flag, nor is it the three flags that served as the official banners for the Confederate States of America. All four flags fly high at Stone Mountain Park as part of a Confederate memorial.

But the Stone Mountain Memorial Association says the flags are not a sign of hate, they are are part of a museum. And SMMA CEO Bill Stephens says, the memorial itself is actually protected by Georgia state law.

Stephens said in a statement:

"Stone Mountain is preserved by state law as a Confederate memorial. The law that changed the flag to our current state flag also expressly prohibits changes at Stone Mountain Park. Some on both sides of these issues have said that these Confederate symbols belong in a museum. Here in Georgia, Stone Mountain Park serves that purpose."

Jones says the problem is the manner in which the flags are displayed.

"Where you are flying a flag next to the United States flag, that indicates to people that this is more than a memorial, this is credence to a time that has long gone," she said.

11Alive News spoke with people at the park Tuesday, many of whom said the flags would not cause them to change their behavior.

"It only hurts you if you let it hurt you," Candi Lee said, adding it is "just a symbol."

Another patron agreed, adding, "I'd rather see it here than at the State Capitol."