Gettysburg, South Dakota Police Department to Continue Using Confederate Battle Flag in Logo
The shooting deaths of nine people in South Carolina have caused many people and communities to reconsider the use of the Confederate battle flag and how it is displayed.
A local South Dakota community is among those, but unlike many others, they have decided to continue to use the decisive symbol on police uniforms.
According to the Associated Press, the Gettysburg Police Department says it doesn't intend to change their logo, which includes the Confederate flag despite a Flandreau man's calls for the insignia to be altered.
Chief Bill Wainman said Tuesday the police patch is a tribute to the history of the town, which was settled by Civil War veterans in the 1880s. He says it has nothing to do with racism.
Lynn Hart, an African-American and a member of the Yankton Sioux Tribe says he would like to see the divisive symbol removed and says Gettysburg is embarrassing itself.
Gettysburg police chief Bill Wainman told KSFY-TV
"The town was founded, we were founded by Civil War veterans, both north and south. It's part of our memorial down at the courthouse to honor the Civil War veterans that we have here. Our cemetery is full of Civil War veterans. It's very important to our town to have our history and this is part of it."
Gettysburg mayor Bill Wuttke also told KSFY
"They came up with this patch and the police committee and the council was in favor of it. It's been fine for six years, now all of a sudden they're saying it's racist, and that's the last thing why we started it."
The Associated Press, KSFY-TV contributed to this report.