ATLANTA — Perhaps in defiance of the national move to remove the Confederate battle flag from government institutions, racist vandals tried to deface the historic church near the Martin Luther King Jr. Center where the Civil Rights icon and his father once preached.
Federal authorities are investigating why vandals placed four Confederate battle flags were found on the grounds of the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, just a short walk from where MLK grew up.
According to Yahoo.com, a maintenance worker discovered the flags at approximately 6 a.m. Thursday and notified officers at the National Park Service, which operates The King Center.
“Our grounds men were so upset, they took pictures and then they moved them,” Rev Shannon Jones of Ebenezer told the AP. Park Service officers discouraged that move, saying the Confederate battle flag placement is evidence.
Even though there were no witnesses to the crime, authorities hope the video camera at the church will help federal and local police identify the assailant and any accomplices.
A conference on the role on black churches in social justice issues has been going on in Ebenezer’s facilities, Jones said.
The King Center complex sits just outside the eastern edge of downtown Atlanta along Auburn Avenue, once the epicenter of bustling black businesses and civil rights activities.