Effingham County, Georgia’s heated debate over their high school’s “Rebel” mascot just got bumped up a notch as police probe online death threats against Francys Johnson, president of the state’s NAACP.
It all started back in August when a delegation from the NAACP went to an Effingham County School Board meeting, where they ever-so-politely asked them to change the local High School’s “Rebel” mascot, stop using “Dixie” as the school’s fight song, and to remove all those Confederate flag images on display. They were then shouted down by a room full of maniacal white people who apparently cannot live without their pathetic excuse for a school mascot.
In a statement from the NAACP’s Georgia chapter, Francys Johnsonpractically tied himself up in knots trying to explain why Effingham County High School’s mascot — and Confederate imagery in general — are hateful and racist without actually accusing the people of Effingham County of being hateful and racist.
“ I want to be clear. I do not believe that every American who has displayed the Confederate flag endorses slavery as an economic and social order, treason as a solution, and bigotry as a value system. Yet, to many people of all hues and backgrounds; it now symbolizes America’s original sin.”
If the Confederate flag’s really about “heritage” and not hate, then why have the folks from Effingham County and the South allowed the Ku Klux Klan and other white terrorist groups to wave the damned thing around for the past 150 years?
“To the southern patriot, your symbol of heritage was ruined because you did not demand that Jesse Helms, David Dukes, and the uptown Klan in business suits known as the White Citizens Council stop appropriating it for their hate.”
Johnson then concludes by once again asking so-called Southern patriots to lay the Confederate flag to rest.
“It’s time for the Confederate flag and the glorification of rebel culture that fought to maintain slavery and Jim Crow as an economic and social order to surrender. If we want closure on a 150 year old chapter in American history; we must unite under the American flag as true patriots. In fact, that would be a good name and mascot for the Effingham County High School currently embroiled in a debate on the use of the Confederate flag and rebel imagery. I say change the mascot to the Effingham County Patriots! Replace the Stars and Bars with the Stars and Stripes!”
Effingham County Police Investigate Death Threats Against The NAACP’s Francys Johnson
WSAV3 ran Johnson’s statement on Effingham County High School’s Confederate mascot and flag imagery in full. Effingham County Commissioner Forrest Floyd then told the Savannah Now that he was “sickened” by Johnson’s statement, along with some choice remarks he made on a local radio show. And of course, when Savannah Now posted the article on their Facebook page, one of the first responses was a death threat.
Francys Johnson spotted it, screen captured it, and posted it to his wall.
To their credit, Effingham County police is taking this death threat (plus a second one) seriously, and has launched an investigation.
Effingham NAACP has received 2 Death Threats in 3 Weeks #ECHSRebels #confederateflag https://t.co/qyxIdvun0j pic.twitter.com/i8FclooV8A
— EffinghamNAACP (@EffinghamNAACP) September 12, 2015
Here’s the video with the news report on the death threats leveled against Francys Johnson and the NAACP over their request to change Effingham County High School’s “Rebel” mascot and Confederate imagery.