Gamecocks AD calls for removal of Confederate flag

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Thanks to the unconscionable tragedy that unfolded last week, the Confederate flag flying around South Carolina’s statehouse has once again become the focus of intense scrutiny.

Nine members of an African-American church in Charleston were gunned down by a white male, who was subsequently seen in various photographs with the Confederate flag prominently displayed.  Those images amidst the tragedy brought to mind the words of Steve Spurrier nearly a decade ago when it came to the Confederate flag, which the Gamecocks head coach labeled as “embarrassing to our state” and something “we need to get rid of.”

While Spurrier has yet to comment publicly on the issue that’s been raised anew, the Ol’ Ball Coach’s boss, USC athletic director Ray Tanner, has.  And, suffice to say, there’s no gray area on  the issue as far as the AD is concerned.

Tanner, Spurrier and others like them may very well get their wish as Gov. Nikki Haley has scheduled a press conference for 4 p.m. ET Monday afternoon, at which time she’s expected to call for the Confederate flag to come down from the Statehouse grounds. From the Charleston Post & Courier:

Lawmakers have an unfinished budget, but are considering using the current extended session to address wording that would remove the flag from the Confederate monument as part of the 2015-16 state spending plan.

Another avenue being explored is adding wording that would include legislation to remove the flag in the continuing work resolution.

The flag was removed from the Statehouse dome and from inside the two chambers in 2000 as part of a compromise that put it on permanent display next the Confederate soldier’s monument. It would take a vote of two-thirds of both houses to remove it as the law was written.

Another statue memorializing the Confederacy in the city of Columbia was spray-painted with the messages “Black Lives Matter” and “THIS IS THE PROBLEM. #RACIST” following the mass shooting.

UPDATED 2:04 p.m. ET: The momentum in the Palmetto State to have the Confederate flag removed is swiftly growing.