In Virginia, Confederate flag license plates have been recalled, and some people are fighting the move. A challenge against the recall has been filed in a Virginia state court by the Virginia Division commander for the Sons of Confederate Veterans, Leonard Tracy Clary.
Clary is bringing legal action against the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles in regards to its decision to issue a recall. A federal judge has already ruled that the state is allowed to outlaw the commemorative license plates. The federal judge made this decision in July.
Meanwhile, in a separate court action, another judge of a circuit court dismissed a lawsuit concerning the removal of the third national flag of the Confederacy. The flag had been displayed on the outside of a mansion where Confederate President Jefferson Davidson and his cabinet had fled to in the final days of the Civil War.
In June of this year, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe said that he would begin phasing out the plates featuring the Confederate Flag. He said that the image was “unnecessarily, divisive and hurtful”. His decision came after nine African-Americans were killed in a church in Charleston, SC. The suspect in the shooting had been featured in photographs posing with the Confederate Flag in the past.
As for Clary, his attorneys are arguing that the decision made at the federal level should not have an effect on Virginia state law, and the recall is not under the jurisdiction of the Virginia state DMV. Additionally, they say that the state’s ban of the confederate flag outside of official buildings should not affect its display on license plates.
About 1,600 such license plates have been issued in the state of Virginia. Since the recall was issued, only about 200 have been returned. Others have been returned in person, but an exact number has not yet been provided.