Letter to the Editor

Citizen Forum

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Gently changing minds

I feel obliged to remark on the last week’s LCC poll on the removal of Confederate monuments. I’m asking those who oppose their removal to open the empathetic parts of their brains and hearts, keeping in mind that the color of skin in which we were born was not our choice. An acquaintance told me, “The monuments in my hometown celebrate the men who fought to keep those who look like me enslaved, not those who fought for freedom.” 

Do you know that one has to travel abroad to see a monument celebrating Black emancipation?  More than 700 pro-slavery, white supremacist monuments dot the United States. “These monuments are not benign markers of Southern heritage. Alexander Stephens, vice president of the Confederacy, declared the Confederacy to be founded ‘upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery, subordination to the superior race, is his natural and normal condition.” - Samuel Sinyangwe 

As we saw in Charlottesville, Confederate monuments have become a rallying point for today’s white supremacists. Less we decide to move to Harrison and join the hooded, I suggest we conclude Confederate statues and symbols were designed to empower a vile ideology and to disempower those oppressed by it and must be removed to museums.

- Julie Freeman, Ph.D.