Travel News

A man who carried a Confederate flag in the Capitol was arrested.

A man who was pictured holding a Confederate battle flag inside the U.S. Capitol last week during the riot was arrested in Delaware on Thursday, two law enforcement officials said. The man, Kevin Seefried, was wanted by the FBI, who had asked the public for help in identifying him and had widely circulated a dispatch plastered with images from him.

In a newsletter, the agency said it was seeking help in identifying people “who had made an illegal entry” into the Capitol, and asked the public to refer to Photo No.30 when providing advice on the whereabouts of the man with the Confederate flag, now identified by The New York Times as Mr. Seefried.

The FBI had received more than 126,000 photo and video tips earlier this week, as officers also cleaned manifestos from airline passengers and videos of air travelers to and from Washington for potential suspects. The chief federal prosecutor in Washington said this week that he expected the number of people charged with crimes related to the Capitol Riot to reach hundreds.

Federal agents made new arrests in New York, Maryland, Texas and Florida on Wednesday, including a firefighter in the town of Sanford, near Orlando.

Travel News

Confederate battle flag in the Capitol: a “ jarring ” first in US history

A Muslim American student said he held back tears when he saw the image of a Trump supporter carrying the Confederate battle flag on Wednesday through the halls of the Capitol.

A black Senate aide who for years confidently walked the halls of Congress said his sense of security collapsed when he saw the photo.

And a black historian said she immediately thought of James Byrd, the black man from Texas who was dragged to death by white supremacists in a van in 1998.

Historian Mary Frances Berry, professor of history at the University of Pennsylvania, said she felt “disgusted” and remembered “wanting to scream.”

“To see it spread out right in front of your face, in the United States Capitol, in the heart of government, was just outrageous,” she said.

Amid the images and videos that emerged from Wednesday’s outburst, the sight of a man casually carrying the Confederate battle flag outside the Senate was a vivid reminder of the persistence of white supremacism more than 150 years later. the end of the civil war.

Months after statues of Confederate leaders and racist figures were removed or demolished around the world, an unidentified man in bluejeans and a black sweatshirt carried the emblem of racism across the hallway of the Ohio clock, in front of a portrait of Senator Charles Sumner of Massachusetts, an abolitionist. .

The emblem has already appeared in the Capitol.

The Mississippi flag, which once featured the Confederate symbol prominently, hung in the Capitol until June 2020, when it was replaced after a vote by the state legislature to remove the emblem.

But Wednesday was the first time someone managed to get the flag into the building as an act of insurgency, historians say.

The man carrying the flag faced less stringent security than that faced by Confederate soldiers who failed to enter the Union forts guarding the Capitol during the Battle of Fort Stevens on July 11-12 1864, said William Blair, professor emeritus of history at Penn State and the former director of the George and Ann Richards Civil War Era Center at the university.

“The Confederate flag penetrated deeper into Washington on January 6, 2021 than it did during the Civil War,” he said.

The spectacle, Professor Blair said, was “shocking and disheartening.”

“There is so much confusion about the people who fly this flag,” he said. “But even if they try to separate slavery from it – which you can’t – how do you justify waving the flag of a confederation that has tried to tear the country apart, then do you call it a patriot?”

Representative Colin Allred, a black Democrat from Texas, said his wife texted him while he was in the House to see if he was safe and sent him a picture of the man with the flag .

The photo was confirmation, he said, that those who stormed the Capitol were “deeply linked” to white supremacism.

“It’s something that will stay with me,” Mr. Allred said. “They put up a noose and scaffolding on Capitol Hill. This event must be a wake-up call. “

Josh Delaney, deputy legislative director of Senator Elizabeth Warren, said he was at home watching the riot unfold on television when the photo appeared on screen.

“It was as if time had stood still,” he says. “My stomach has fallen. I don’t know if I stopped breathing, but it was a shock. I can only imagine that is what it must be like to be really in shock.

Mr. Delaney, who wrote in the Boston Globe about the sight of the flag, is black and grew up in Georgia, where the flag was a painful but unremarkable reminder of where it was unwelcome.

He said he had never expected to see the flag in the Capitol, where he worked for more than six years.

“I always felt like this was the safest place I could be if something happened,” said Mr Delaney, 31. “To shatter this illusion, I don’t know if I’ll have that same feeling again.

Raheel Tauyyab, a junior at the University of Virginia, said he learned of the flag from a professor who was monitoring news of the riot on his computer during a virtual class Wednesday afternoon.

Mr Tauyyab, 20, an American Muslim who said his goal was to someday work on Capitol Hill, said he couldn’t forget the traumatized look on his teacher’s face.

“I won’t lie: I shed a tear,” he said. “It was really painful to see something like this happen.”

Reverend Robert W. Lee IV, a great-great-great-great-grand-nephew of General Robert E. Lee who supported the large-scale removal of his ancestor’s statues, said he had struggled with what ‘he planned to tell the worshipers. Sunday at his non-denominational church, Unifour Church in Newton, North Carolina

He said he couldn’t get the sight of the flag “desecrating” the Capitol out of his mind.

“It shook me deeply in a way other images haven’t seen in the past four years,” he says. Since Wednesday, he said, he has sat down at his computer and struggled to find the right words.

“It hit me like something that, right now, as someone who is supposed to know what to say as a member of the clergy, I have nothing,” he said. “I have nothing on this.”

Travel News

South Carolinians laugh at redesigned palm tree on proposed state flag

The goal was to come up with a standard design for the South Carolina state flag, one that residents could gather together, steal from their porch, or display proudly on T-shirts, mugs and hats. But a proposal to redesign the beloved palm tree on the flag didn’t really make the state’s hearts swell with pride.

A person said it looked like a toilet bowl brush. Others have said it looked like one of the palmettos battered by Hurricane Hugo in 1989. Still others compared it to the little abandoned Christmas tree from the 1965 TV classic “A Charlie Brown Christmas.”

Scott Malyerck, a political consultant who helped create the design as a member of the South Carolina State Flag Study Committee, euphemistically said the tree was “not uniformly loved.” by all the Carolinians of the South ”.

“I read hundreds of comments,” he said, adding that everyone seemed to have an opinion. “It’s hard to find a quintessential palm tree that everyone will support.”

The group first met in 2018 and presented their final recommendations in March, but the redesigned palmetto only recently gained attention when The Post and Courier of Charleston, SC reported on the design. and was inundated with complaints that the tree was “awful” and “terrible!”

“At the end of the day, people hate it,” the newspaper reported. “They really, really hate it.

Ronnie W. Cromer, a state senator who helped create the flag study committee, said following the flashback, he planned to ask committee members, who had worked with historians and graphic designers, to create a more attractive palmetto. represent the state.

“I can’t say it was the most beautiful design I have ever seen,” Mr. Cromer said. “It would be nice to have a prettier little tree.”

The proposed overhaul is sure to stir up passions in South Carolina, given the popularity of the palmetto, the official state tree, on clothing, beach towels and other products, Malyerck said. .

The panel said the South Carolina flag – which also features a blue background and a crescent – was “one of the most attractive, recognizable and marketable state flags in the country.”

Credit…South Carolina State Flag Study Committee

The panel did not want to change the traditional symbols of the flag, but felt that it was necessary to offer a standard version because the state has not had an official design for the flag since 1940, when the flag code was repealed.

As a result, the panel said, the flag makers produced their own versions, each with slight differences in the color, layout and shape of the symbols.

“The idea is just to make it historically accurate and consistent,” Malyerck said. “Flag makers shouldn’t be deciding what it should look like.

To formulate its recommendations, the group delved into the history and vexillology of South Carolina, the study of flags.

The panel chose a particular indigo for the background after noting that officers of the 2nd South Carolina Regiment, commanded by Colonel William Moultrie during the War of Independence, wore uniforms in that color.

These blue uniforms also inspired Moultrie to create the first South Carolina flag using the same color, the panel said. The indigo dye, grown in the Revolutionary-era South Carolina Lowcountry, made blue a logical choice.

In designing the crescent, the committee looked at period examples on the Moultrie flag, as well as crescent-shaped badges worn on Revolutionary War caps.

But the panel acknowledged that “perhaps the most difficult task the committee has faced in its work has been the adoption of an appropriate and historic palmetto to appear on the flag.

The palmetto is a revered symbol of the defeat of the British fleet at Fort Moultrie on Sullivan Island. The fort was constructed from palm logs, which absorbed the impact of cannonballs, according to the state legislature’s website.

Ultimately, the committee based their design for the tree on a 1910 pencil sketch by Ellen Heyward Jervey, an artist and librarian from Charleston, who provided drawings of crescents and palmettes that were used by a state official, AS Salley, to design the state flag. this year.

“We wanted it to get credit for it,” said W. Eric Emerson, director of the South Carolina Department of Archives and History, who served on the panel. “It was at the same time that the 19th Amendment was adopted. She is a woman who contributed to her efforts in the creation of the South Carolina state flag and was given no credit for it.

But Mr Emerson said Ms Jervey’s sketch proved difficult to translate into a palm tree “that looks like what people are used to.”

“This is how we ended up with what we had,” he said.

Mr Cromer said the public has spoken and changes should be made.

“We have listened to our constituents,” he said, “and we go back to the drawing board on that tree.