Rep. Yarmuth: Confederate Flag "Belongs In A Museum Of Shame," GOP Wants To Take Us 150 Years Back

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Today, members of the House of Representatives busied themselves bickering about whether or not Confederate battle flag merchandise should be banned from national park gift shops.

Before GOP leaders decided to yank the Interior appropriations amendment in question and postpone the vote, Rep. John Yarmouth (Democrat of Kentucky) said Republicans who were defending the flag's sale were ignoring "this flag’s history of white supremacy and treason."

"And while the people of South Carolina move one step past this terrible tragedy, many House Republicans want to take our nation one hundred and fifty years back."

Yarmouth explains that: "That bill was pulled because members on the other side of the aisle objected to banning the display and sale of the Confederate flags at national park facilities."

"It is moral cowardice," he continues, "to pretend it symbolizes anything other than a heritage of hate and human oppression."

"The Confederate battle flag does not belong atop our state capitols and it certainly should not be sold or displayed at our national parks. It belongs in a museum of shame, alongside the other relics of hate and division that tore our country apart."

Transcript:

REP. JOHN YARMOUTH (D-KENTUCKY): Mr. Speaker, last night in the South Carolina legislature we saw Democrats and Republicans join together to take down the Confederate battle flag, many with tears in their eyes still grieving the nine lives lost in Charleston.

And while the people of South Carolina move one step past this terrible tragedy, many House Republicans want to take our nation one hundred and fifty years back.

We were scheduled to vote on the Interior appropriations bill today.

That bill was pulled because members on the other side of the aisle objected to banning the display and sale of the Confederate flags at national park facilities.

For years, I’ve heard all the arguments from those who defend the display of the Confederate battle flag. But it is moral cowardice to ignore this flag’s history of white supremacy and treason, to pretend it symbolizes anything other than a heritage of hate and human oppression.

The Confederate battle flag does not belong atop our state capitols and it certainly should not be sold or displayed at our national parks. It belongs in a museum of shame, alongside the other relics of hate and division that tore our country apart.

I yield back.

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