Georgia’s Hateful Heritage

Barry Dredze
2 min readMar 26, 2021
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signing Voter Suppression bill into law at his office hearth beneath plantation portrait and Georgia’s state flag modeled after the national flag of the Confederacy (Photo: Office of Gov. Brian Kemp)

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp posted the above photo to his Twitter feed, upon signing his state legislature’s new voter suppression bill into law on Thursday, March 25.

Among the elements that jump out of that photo is the plantation portrait hanging above the Georgia Governor’s office hearth. Flanking the hearth are the flags of the United States and the State of Georgia.

That flag we see in Kemp’s photo was adopted in 2003, replacing the previous design that represented the state since 1956 — two years after the Brown v. Board of Education decision that desegregated schools:

Georgia State flag, 1956

Controversy over the flag led to the change in design that we know today. The new design was approved in 2003 and was hailed as an improvement.

Nevertheless, the symbol of the state remains a tribute to its slave state Confederate past and Governor Kemp’s and his Republican dominant statehouse’s return to Georgia’s Jim Crow heritage.

Graphic by Warenotice CEO Shane Mumma (2017)
Barry Dredze

Just another mortal, tweaking my cognitive map on the fly.