Six Flags Over Texas is drawing criticism from outspoken Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller over the park's recent decision to stop flying five national flags, including the flag of the Confederate States of America.
The park, which opened in 1961, was named after the six nations who at one time or another claimed sovereignty over Texas: France, Spain, Mexico, the Republic of Texas, the Confederate States of America and the United States of America.
The original design of the park included six areas, one for each nation, highlighting the impact each had on Texas history.
Until Aug. 18 each of the six flags were flown at several locations through the park when, corollary to a movement in several major U.S. cities to remove Confederate symbols, park officials decided to replace the Confederate flag, as well as the flags of Spain, France, Mexico and the Republic of Texas, with American flags.
That decision apparently sparked the ire of Miller, who said in a statement Monday the removal of the historic flags marked a "sad day for Texas" and that "we are watching before our very eyes the high-jacking and blatant theft of our state's history from our children, grandchildren, and future generations."
While mentioning the monuments to southern soldiers, Miller went on to decry the "anarchist movement sweeping our country, destroying and attempting to sanitize our nation's history."
"I was extremely disappointed to hear that Six Flags over Texas in Arlington had succumb[ed] to this scourge of race baiting, liberal activism," Miller said.
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Six Flags said last week the flags were removed to further their mission to create a place positive place of inclusion for all of their guests.
"At Six Flags Over Texas we strive every single day to make people happy and to create a fun, thrilling and safe family friendly experience for our guests. We always choose to focus on celebrating the things that unite us versus those that divide us. As such, we have changed the flag displays in our park to feature American flags."
Miller's entire statement can be read below:
"I'm very concerned about the militant, anarchist movement sweeping our country, destroying and attempting to sanitize our nation's history. The monuments honoring our southern soldiers are but a first step in a trend that very well could eventually bring down the American flag at some point if this trend is allowed to continue.
I was extremely disappointed to hear that Six Flags over Texas in Arlington had succumb to this scourge of race baiting, liberal activism and that the company had decided to bring down the six historic flags that flew over Texas over her long and colorful history and replace them with just one-the United States Flag-which one day these same antagonists will argue has its own tarnished history.
Since 1961, the Six Flags over Texas theme park has honored the Lone Star State by making these historic banners an integral core of the park's identity and appeal. By virtue of this decision by park management to lower these important symbols of Texas history, the company is implying that one should look upon them with shame and dismay. I contend that Texas history is rich and colorful, while at the same time complicated and troubled, but when looked at in its totality, never shameful! The fact is that men and women of all origins and races fought and died under every one of those flags throughout our state's rich history, and to discount them and hide them away out of fear of what a band of socialistic fear mongers might say, dishonors the very memory of all that have fallen under them.
The bringing down of these flags as well as the removal of our historical monuments around the country is just another act of appeasement to the intolerant, liberal, and oftentimes violent left who strive to establish a false narrative where our state's and nation's history is one dimensional. It is not! The decision by Six Flag over Texas to remove five of its historic flags was a sad day for Texas and all of America. We are watching before our very eyes the high-jacking and blatant theft of our state's history from our children, grandchildren, and future generations. I would admonish every public official and leader not to fall prey to the divisive scourge of anti-American militant protests, and to stand up for the unique, colorful, and complicated history of the greatest state in the greatest nation the world has ever known. It is my prayer that the management of Six Flags over Texas will reconsider their misguided and harmful decision."
Six Flags said last week the removal of the national flags is permanent. They added that they routinely change their flag displays for seasonal and holiday displays and that years ago the company changed their branding logo away from the national flags to colored pennants.
The flags were also replaced at the two other Six Flags theme parks where they were flown, Six Flags Fiesta Texas and Six Flags Over Georgia.