ATLANTA (AP) â?? Georgia officials are releasing a specialty license plate featuring the Confederate battle flag, infuriating civil rights advocates and renewing a fiery debate.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Georgia's new plate has fueled a clash between those who believe the battle flag honors Confederate heritage and others who view it as a racially charged symbol of oppression.
Southern Christian Leadership Conference spokesman Maynard Eaton tells the newspaper that state should not have sanctioned the move and calls displaying the battle emblem "reprehensible."
The Georgia Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans requested that the state issue the new plates. A spokesman says it meant no offense and that people have a right to commemorate their heritage.
Gov. Nathan Deal says the new license plate was a surprise to him.
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