Mississippi governor: April named Confederate Heritage Month
JACKSON, Miss. - Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant is proclaiming April as Confederate Heritage Month, without mentioning slavery.
His proclamation was posted to the Mississippi Sons of Confederate Veterans website, but not on the governor's site. He signed it days before legislators killed bills that would have removed the Confederate battle emblem from the 122-year-old state flag.
Bryant spokesman Clay Chandler says previous governors, Democrat and Republican, have issued similar proclamations. Chandler says Bryant believes history deserves study, "no matter how unpleasant or complicated parts of it may be."
A weekly newspaper, the Jackson Free Press, first reported on the proclamation Wednesday. Governors of some other Southern states have issued similar proclamations in the past.
Confederate symbols have been widely debated since slayings last year at a historic black church in South Carolina.