Santa Clarita Senator Votes Against Confederate Flag Ban - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 1:45pm

A measure designed to prohibit the state of California from selling or displaying items with the Confederate flag was approved by a 33-2 vote with state Senator Steve Knight, (R- Palmdale, who represents much of the Santa Clarita Valley, Santa Clarita) as one of two who voted against the measure.

"I read the bill a couple times before we voted and I felt that it has some serious constitutional issues," Knight said. "After, the American Civil Liberties Union said this bill definitely had constitutional issues. I understand that because (the bill) has to do with a Confederate flag image that people were very upset, but I felt that the bill had constitutional problems and voted that way."

Existing law regulates the sale of certain merchandise, including political items and sports memorabilia, according to the California Legislative Information website.

This bill would prohibit the state of California from selling or displaying the Battle Flag of the Confederacy, or a similar image, or tangible personal property inscribed with those images, unless the image appears in a book, digital medium, or state museum that serves an educational or historical purpose.

"I read the bill a couple times before we voted and I felt that it has some serious constitutional issues. After, the American Civil Liberties Union said this bill definitely had constitutional issues," Knight said. "I understand that because (the bill) has to do with a Confederate flag image that people were very upset, but I felt that the bill had constitutional problems and voted that way."

Assembly Bill 2444 was introduced in February in 2014 and was sent passed on to Gov. Jerry Brown for his signature on Aug. 22.

"No Californian should be exposed to the type of hate or threat of violence caused by the image of the Confederate flag," said Assemblymember Isadore Hall, III, (D- Los Angeles). "AB 2444 respects constitutional protections by restricting government speech, not individual speech and will send a strong message that California and its taxpayers will not be in the business of promoting racism, exclusion, oppression or violence towards others."

Hall's AB 2444, sponsored by the California/Hawaii National Association for the Advancement of Colored People does not restrict a private resident from selling a Confederate flag on private property nor does it prohibit a private resident from displaying a Confederate flag, according to a news release.

Knight hopes Brown will "build a (constitutional) policy that will cover everything so this doesn't become patchwork in the future."

Source: http://hometownstation.com/santa-clarita-n...