Why Confederate Monuments Have no Place

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             Protesters want this Confederate monument in Wilmington N.C. to be taken down

Related Image Expand Collapse Protesters want this Confederate monument in Wilmington N.C. to be taken down

Those who favor destruction of Confederate symbols argue that we should not - we can not - honor those who fought for the preservation of slavery with statues prominently displayed on hundreds of courthouse and statehouse lawns.

Alexander Stephens said he and his brother want the statue of their forebear moved to a museum "not to have it "wiped away" but to have it contextualized so that someone might actually learn something from it".

Confederate statues are scattered across the South, and to some Americans they are pieces of the nation's history.

Even though the council unanimously supports removing the Confederate monuments, Mayor Mike Rawlings and Councilman Philip Kingston disagreed over the timing of the removal and whether there should be a discussion that includes keeping them.

Over the course of the past few weeks, the discourse concerning the roles that racism, white supremacy and confederate monuments play in American society has reached a fever pitch.

White supremacy is neither true nor moral.

She explained that exclusively taking down these monuments "assumes that the only lasting vestiges of white supremacy in this country are in the form of these Confederate statues". So, I looked into it, and I now understand that the statues certainly are symbols of a particular southern heritage, and it is for this very reason that they should be taken down from their public locations. "For one, we know that there are all kinds of these statues all over the country". Contrary to the argument that the Civil War was about states' rights, the right that was being claimed by the Southern states including Virginia was a right to own another human being to be used as slave labor.

Hiding the hard facts of history does not erase the past, nor does it take a proactive approach in keeping devastating historical events, like the Holocaust or slavery, from reoccurring.

Perhaps we need to accept that the war happened, regardless of why it occurred.

History, though, is safe, preserved as it has been and will continue to be, by more effective means than stone figures, things like history books and school curricula.

The city council voted 3-2 in February to take down the Lee statue in Lee Park, but the city was then sued in March to prevent the removal of the statue.

However, one of the odd and understudied by-products of the war is that, despite the all-consuming talk of treason and loyalty during and immediately following the conflict, by the later decades of the century former Confederate citizens could wrap themselves in the American flag and still erect monuments to their Confederate heroes, all without irony or sanction from the rest of the country.

But just as people mature from one year to another, so too can communities and states.

Other cities across the US that have taken down controversial monuments are grappling with the same questions. Secondly, it would ideally get the ball rolling for conversation surrounding similar justice for the First Nation's People whose history, land and rights were systematically and forcibly smothered by those who settled and built this country. How can we create an atmosphere of critical thought and discussion? They definitely represent what was practiced, even if it was not ethical. A notable exception is Richmond, once capital of the Confederacy, that has a whole street, Monument Avenue, with five different Confederate leaders-Robert E. Lee, J.E.B.

The "Defender of Freedom" monument in White Point Garden in Charleston.

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