Bill Would Remove all Members of Tennessee Historical CommissionBreaking News
tags: memorials, Confederacy, Nathan Bedford Forrest, Tennessee, public history
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Not even two weeks after the historical commission voted to remove the bust of Nathan Bedford Forrest from the state capitol, state senators are trying to vote to remove all members from the commission.
Senator Joey Hensley, a Hohenwald Republican, sponsored the bill. It would replace all of the members of the 29 person commission with 12 new members.
Currently, 24 of the commissioners are appointed by the governor of the state. Sen. Hensley's bill would reduce the total number of members to 12. The governor, Lt. Governor and state speaker of the house would each choose four members.
While not specifically mentioning the bust of Nathan Bedford Forrest in the meeting, members made references to decisions the historical commission has recently made.
The commission voted to remove Forrest's bust from the capitol building on March 8.
Forrest is a controversial figure in the state's history. He was a slave trader, Confederate war general and one of the first leaders of the KKK. His image displayed prominently outside both houses of the legislature has been the center of many protests through the years.
"In our culture today it seems there is a desire to cancel history, cancel culture, cancel narratives that are just based on fact. I think that that's a dangerous precedent," said Tullahoma republican Senator Janice Bowling.