On Thursday Democrats submitted legislation which would remove all Confederate monuments on federal property. This includes inside the Capitol, military bases, highways, parks, and some streets – anywhere that is maintained by federal tax dollars.
This legislation was introduced by two Democrats in the House of Representatives, Adriano Espaillat and Dwight Evans, right as the controversy surrounding confederate monuments has reached its zenith.
In a statement accompanying the legislation, Espaillat said, “We recognize these symbols for what they are and for the abhorrence they represent, still today … We defeated the Confederacy once, and we must be willing to defeat it once again, now and forever, as the tribute to the legacy we leave behind for the next generation.”
Both the law makers noted that the number of public locations named after Confederate leaders is estimated to be well over 100, including public schools and the military bases. Unsurprisingly, the majority of such locations are found in the southern states – meaning that this legislation, in effect, specifically target southern heritage to be ripped away and destroyed.
A member of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), Evans argued that the Confederate monuments are, “constant reminder of what our ancestors endured … If we want our nation to heal and move forward, we must remove these abhorrent symbols at once.”
The CBC and its members have renewed their calls to remove the Confederate statues from this nation. Many of these same lawmakers went on a similar monument-removal crusade in 2015, after a shooting at a historic black church in Charleston, SC.
As for the confederate statues that lie in the Capitol building – the National Statuary Hall Collection – only the individual states hold the power to recall and remove statues. The spokesperson for Speaker Paul Ryan, Doug Andres, confirmed this, saying, “These are decisions for those states to make.”
However, Nancy Pelosi suggested that Congress could change the law so that the Congress – instead of the states – had ultimate authority over the removal of statues in the Capitol Building.
Efforts to remove Confederate monuments and statues have multiplied in the communities countrywide after the violence and hatred on display during the Charlottesville Disaster. In response, the predominantly minority city of Baltimore tore down four Confederate memorials overnight, while protesters also pulled down a confederate memorial in Durham, N.C.
On Thursday, Trump tweeted in support of confederate monuments, saying that it was, “Sad to see the history and culture of our great country being ripped apart with the removal of our beautiful statues and monuments … Robert E Lee, Stonewall Jackson — who’s next, Washington, Jefferson? So foolish!”
He further added, “The beauty that is being taken out of our cities, towns and parks will be greatly missed and never able to be comparably replaced!”
These Antifa rioters are worse than book burners! You see, you can always reprint a book – but once a monument is destroyed, it is lost forever.