New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) signed a bill banning the sale or display of hate symbols on state-owned public property or events, such as state fairs.

The law went to effect immediately and specifically calls out the Confederate flag. The law defines the term, “symbol of hate” to coincide with “symbols of white supremacist and Neo-Nazi ideology or the Battle Flag of the Confederacy.”

“The Confederate Flag is a symbol of racism, exclusion, oppression and violence towards African-Americans,” the law states. “Its public display is designed only to instill fear, intimidation and a direct threat of violence towards others.”

The issue grew over the debate of displaying Confederate flags and monuments over the summer following the death of George Floyd. Multiple states, organizations and companies already approved the removal of items related to the Confederacy from public display.

The new law does allow some exceptions in the display of Confederate images. If it appears in “a book, digital medium, museum or serves an educational or historical purpose,” it is allowed to be displayed on state property or event.

“The bill allows New York State to lead by example, and discourage the perpetuation of symbols that do not represent our values of justice and inclusion,” said State Sen. Alessandra Biaggi, who introduced the bill. “Today we say no to hate.”

Earlier this year, Mississippi state legislature voted in favor to replace the state’s flag. Mississippi was the last state to feature the symbol of the Confederacy on the flag.

The confederacy consisted of 13 states – South Carolina, Florida, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Tennessee, North Carolina, Virginia, Arkansas, Missouri, Kentucky and Texas separated from the United States of America to create the Confederate States of America, a territory where the slavery of African-Americans was legal. The Confederacy was broken up after the south lost the Civil War to the north. The Confederacy only lasted four years.

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