Widespread efforts to relegate Confederacy history to a footnote following the South Carolina church massacre in June have popped up again, this time in New Orleans.
According to ABC News, the city council of The Big Easy have just agreed in a 6 to 1 vote to make a huge statement along some of their busiest streets by removing four prominent monuments to the Confederacy. That includes a 16-foot-tall statue of Gen. Robert E. Lee atop a 60-foot-column that has stood there since 1884 on St. Charles Ave. Another Lee statue and a Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard statue are set for demolition, along with a Crescent City White League obelisk with an inscription that referenced Yankee troops leaving after recognizing "white supremacy in the South" before it was covered up in 1993 with a sign that honors both the North and South.
Mayor Mitch Landrieu headed the effort to remove the monuments and gained support from those who feel that Confederate history is too closely tied with slavery and Jim Crow laws.
Methodist pastor Rev. Shawn Anglim spoke in favor of the move, saying "Do it for our children, and our children's children."
Landrieu claimed that the monuments were dividing the city and stifling progress and must be torn down for the city to move forward.
But not everyone was eager to agree. The lone dissenting council member, Stacy Head, cautioned against rushing to erase symbols that have significant historical value to New Orleans.
Amidst jeers from the crowd, she said that repairing the the wrongs of the past is "a lot harder work than removing monuments."
According to CNN, others have argued that the Confederacy was not about preserving slavery and that the monuments honor those who fought to protect the city against the invading Union army.
According to Fox News, Monumental Task Committee Inc. president Pierre McGraw said "The word Confederate has become a buzzword for ugly. But a lot of us were Confederates. New Orleans was part of the Confederacy. For a lot of people, these people were heroes. It looks like we are sanitizing history. Where does it end?"
How would you handle these symbols for future generations?