Confederate monuments targeted by vandals: Time to rethink memorials?

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tags: Confederate flag



On Tuesday, officials found that a Civil War memorial in Charleston's Battery had been spray painted with the words, “Black Lives Matter,” while a second historic statue, in a park near Emanuel AME Church, was also vandalized. Red spray-painted letters edited the John C. Calhoun statue in Marion Square, changing "Calhoun" to "Calhoun, racist" and adding "and slavery" to the epigram "Truth Justice and the Constitution." Mr. Calhoun was a prominent champion for slavery in the decades leading up to the Civil War, praising white supremacy and slavery as "a positive good."

Vandalizing Calhoun is nothing new, say historians; the Calhoun statue was defaced so regularly in the 1880s and '90s that the statute was placed on a much higher pedestal to discourage vandals.

Other memorials to the Confederate past are also facing negative attention. In Baltimore, Maryland, "Black Lives Matter" was spray painted in yellow on another statue honoring Confederate soldiers.

In Austin, Texas, students are using a different approach to rid themselves of an unwanted memorial. Hundreds of University of Texas students have signed a petition calling for the university to remove a statue of Jefferson Davis, who was president of the Confederate States of America during the Civil War. "Given Jefferson Davis’ vehement support for the institution of slavery and white supremacy, we believe this statue is not in line with the university’s core values," says the petition.




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