Aunjanue Ellis attended the NAACP Image Awards on Friday, February 5th and used the red carpet to make a major political statement. The Quantico star walked the red carpet in a white dress penned with the phrase “Take it Down Mississippi,” in reference to the state’s use of the Confederate battle emblem on their state flag. The dress was designed by Quantico costume designer, Sami Rattner, which included a red handprint next to the phrase.
In a June 2015 column for TIME, Ellis vowed to “never act in another movie shot in this state until that flag comes down.” To the actress, the current Mississippi state flag is a symbol of hate, not heritage.
Mississippi is the last state in the country to include the confederate emblem and has been urged to remove it many times. Following the Charleston church shooting in South Carolina last June, confederate flags were taken down in that state and in Alabama.
Following the start of Black History Month, the NAACP has been urging state counties to take down the flag. While cities such as Oxford, Columbus, Clarksdale, and Hattiesburg have taken action, most claim that the majority of Mississippians support the flag.
(Photo: Cindy Ord/Getty Images for SCAD)