New Orleans Begins Controversial Removal of Confederate Monuments

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[h1]New Orleans begins controversial removal of Confederate monuments[/h1]
By Nicole Chavez and Emanuella Grinberg, CNN
Updated 8:58 AM ET, Mon April 24, 2017

 


The Battle of Liberty Place monument was one of four scheduled for relocation in New Orleans.

(CNN) In the dark of night, workers wearing masks and tactical vests arrived Monday at New Orleans' Battle of Liberty Place monument to take it down.

Police snipers were positioned on nearby rooftops, according to The Times-Picayune newspaper, and the trucks and equipment used in the operation had company names covered by cardboard and black tape.

The controversial removal was the first of four scheduled relocations of Confederate memorials in the city, despite weeks of opposition from pro-monument groups and threats against workers. It came as some Southern states celebrated Confederate Memorial Day, although Louisiana is not among them. State government offices in those states will be closed in observance of the holiday.

The Battle of Liberty Place monument was erected in 1891 to mark a deadly fight between members of the "Crescent City White League" -- a group opposed to the city's biracial police force and state militia after the Civil War -- and officers from that police force.

A few hours before sunrise Monday, the obelisk -- located not far from Canal Street, near the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas -- was slowly taken apart as supporters and opponents of the action gathered nearby amid a strong police presence.

The event incited cheers and applause from some people in the crowd while others engaged in heated discussions.

"This should be a celebration but instead this is done clandestinely. They got the workers who are taking it down dressed in black jackets, helmets and their faces are covered, to us that's cowardice," one person there told CNN affiliate WVUE-TV.

City officials have attempted to remove and relocate the monuments since 2015.
[h3]  [/h3][h3]Workers received threats[/h3]
The relocations follow debate in recent years in the South about what to do with Confederate symbols, especially after the killings of nine black parishioners in a Charleston, South Carolina, church by a self-described white supremacist in 2015.

Counter-efforts to honor Southern heritage and preserve symbols of the Confederacy have also sprung up.

A legal battle prevented New Orleans from removing the statues until a federal judge in Louisiana affirmed the city's right to move them in March.

Police barricades protected the workers, who removed the Battle of Liberty Place monument piece by piece. The security measures were taken after several contractors received threats.

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu said the removal of the monuments should not be seen as a political move or retaliation against a specific group.

"This is about showing the whole world that we as a city and as a people are able to acknowledge, understand, reconcile -- and most importantly -- choose a better future," Landrieu said.

The statues will be placed in storage while the city finds a museum or another facility for them, officials said.

Three other Confederate monuments in New Orleans are set to be removed in the near future.
[h3]Robert E. Lee statue[/h3]


The Robert E. Lee Monument in New Orleans

One of them is the monument erected in 1884 to honor Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee. The statue, almost 17-feet tall and weighing more than 3 tons, was built after 14 years of fundraisers and negotiations, the University of New Orleans says.

The group behind its construction was founded about a month after the general's death in 1870 by prominent locals and Civil War veterans. It's located at a roundabout of St. Charles Avenue and Andrew Higgins, not far from the Confederate Memorial Hall Museum.

Last year, the monument was one of several sites vandalized by anti-Trump protesters.
[h3]Jefferson Davis statue[/h3]


New Orleans' Jefferson Davis statue towers over the street also named for the Confederate President.

Another statue scheduled for removal is that of Jefferson Davis. The monument honors the president of the Confederate States of America, who died in New Orleans in 1889.

The 16-foot-tall bronze statue stands atop a 60-foot high column in a street also named after Davis.

In 2004, the words "slave owner" were painted on the base of the monument.
[h3]P.G.T. Beauregard equestrian statue[/h3]


The statue of P.G.T. Beauregard in New Orleans.

A 15-foot tall statue of Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard will be relocated as well. Beauregard was a prominent general during the Civil War and the last survivor of the top Confederate leaders. He died in New Orleans in 1893.

The statue stands in a roundabout at the entrance of City Park and the New Orleans Museum of Art.

In 2015, the words "Black Lives Matter" was spray-painted on both sides of the monument's column, CNN affiliate WDAM-TV reported.

http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/24/us/new-orleans-confederate-statues/
Thoughts? 
 
 
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We'll be seeing more of this...I know in the DC area, there is chatter about possibly re-naming some of the High Schools (JEB Stuart, Washington-Lee, etc.) and some of the roads/highways named after folks in the confederacy. Going to be interesting to see where this goes.
 
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As a former history major this does bother me a bit. America's history is flawed; just like its leaders. More and more I see society trying to become as 'PC' as possible. We can't change or undo our history, both good and bad. The best thing we can do is to learn and educate and not repeat the mistakes that we made. If we are going to remove all Confederate monuments are we going to remove Jefferson and Washington monuments? Are we going to remove any mentions of Andrew Jackson? What about statues for Sherman and Sheridan and the role they played in nearly exterminating Native Americans? My overall point is - if we start removing Confederacy monuments because they are offensive then we might as well not talk about our history overall because many of our so called 'founding fathers' had flaws 10x worse than any Confederate farmers.
 
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As a former history major this does bother me a bit. America's history is flawed; just like its leaders. More and more I see society trying to become as 'PC' as possible. We can't change or undo our history, both good and bad. The best thing we can do is to learn and educate and not repeat the mistakes that we made. If we are going to remove all Confederate monuments are we going to remove Jefferson and Washington monuments? Are we going to remove any mentions of Andrew Jackson? What about statues for Sherman and Sheridan and the role they played in nearly exterminating Native Americans? My overall point is - if we start removing Confederacy monuments because they are offensive then we might as well not talk about our history overall because many of our so called 'founding fathers' had flaws 10x worse than any Confederate farmers.
They are part of our history and should be remembered.

That doesn't mean they should be "honored" though.
 

John Wick

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But does this also mean we will be renaming buildings as well? For example the J Edgar Hoover building.
 
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They are part of our history and should be remembered.

That doesn't mean they should be "honored" though.
So do we take down the Jefferson Memorial? What about the Andrew Jackson memorial? George Washington? The list goes on and on...
 
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superblytrife

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langfor5 langfor5 I don't think it's about the flaws of the confederate farmers.

It's about the fact they were fighting to uphold the institution of slavery. Nobody fighting to uphold that should be honored with a monument. Period. Same goes for anyone else tied to any atrocity.

We can talk about history all day--doesn't bother me one bit. In fact, I think we need to discuss it more and confront it head on. Hell, we've got certain states trying to take slavery out of the history books in school because it makes white people look bad. But being honored for being an ******* for all the world to see? Why do we need that? We don't.
 
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Good, racist traitors should not be honored.
my exact thoughts..... history is very flawed we are honoring folks who did great things but also were slave owners.

cant believe i was force fed all that crap in school
 

NotoriousLEEdope

formerly dapimpjuice4ya
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As a former history major this does bother me a bit. America's history is flawed; just like its leaders. More and more I see society trying to become as 'PC' as possible. We can't change or undo our history, both good and bad. The best thing we can do is to learn and educate and not repeat the mistakes that we made. If we are going to remove all Confederate monuments are we going to remove Jefferson and Washington monuments? Are we going to remove any mentions of Andrew Jackson? What about statues for Sherman and Sheridan and the role they played in nearly exterminating Native Americans? My overall point is - if we start removing Confederacy monuments because they are offensive then we might as well not talk about our history overall because many of our so called 'founding fathers' had flaws 10x worse than any Confederate farmers.
I see where you're coming from but these aren't people who should be honored. I don't care how much history their despicable acts represent. Are there monuments honoring anyone who supported or represented any of the disgusting sentiments that led to the Holocaust?
 
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I see where you're coming from but these aren't people who should be honored. I don't care how much history their despicable acts represent. Are there monuments honoring anyone who supported or represented any of the disgusting sentiments that led to the Holocaust?
America has to be real careful how they pick and choose what leaders we want to 'honor.' A good portion of our so called founding fathers owned slaves, thought of blacks as 'inferior, less educated and overall second class citizens' and then later helped to nearly exterminate all Native Americans.

Not all Confederates believed in slavery just like all Northerners weren't fighting because they believed that all blacks should be free and that it was there moral duty to protect that.

I am all for NOT honoring individuals who supported slavery but this is a topic that needs to addressed and discussed - not swept under a rug. This was a disgusting time period. But you ask Native Americans how they feel about Columbus, Andrew Jackson and any of the other generals and policy leaders who helped exterminate and remove Native peoples from their homelands you will get the same response with less action. Nobody is clamoring to remove Andrew Jackson statues who was a slave OWNER and chased fugitive slaves in SE Florida....he personally removed 46k Indigenous peoples to open up lands for white settlement and slavery...

My point is...if we are going to be removing monuments that honor those that believed in uncomfortable or racist ideals we better be CONSISTENT.
 
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NotoriousLEEdope

formerly dapimpjuice4ya
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America has to be real careful how they pick and choose what leaders we want to 'honor.' A good portion of our so called founding fathers owned slaves, thought of blacks as 'inferior, less educated and overall second class citizens' and then later helped to nearly exterminate all Native Americans.

Not all Confederates believed in slavery just like all Northerners weren't fighting because they believed that all blacks should be free and that it was there moral duty to protect that.

I am all for NOT honoring individuals who supported slavery but this is a topic that needs to addressed and discussed - not swept under a rug. This was a disgusting time period. But you ask Native Americans how they feel about Columbus, Andrew Jackson and any of the other generals and policy leaders who helped exterminate and remove Native peoples from their homelands you will get the same response with less action. Nobody is clamoring to remove Andrew Jackson statues who was a slave OWNER and chased fugitive slaves in SE Florida....he personally removed 46k Indigenous peoples to open up lands for white settlement and slavery...
Maybe they should because I would definitely support that as well. I'm from New Orleans so I've followed the fight to remove these monuments since it began. The company who was originally contracted to do the removal had to back out because those in opposition of removal torched the owner's Lamborghini. There's a reason this removal was done under the cover of darkness. Workers had to work in all black with their faces for their protection. It's sad that that kind of evil still exists in this country. That's the kind of ignorance this movement is fighting. Im well aware of why the civil war was fought and also well aware that not all parties who fought that war did so as some crusade against or for slavery. I'm for removing all monuments honoring people who fought and stood for the oppression of any group of people, not just mine.
 
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Maybe they should because I would definitely support that as well. I'm from New Orleans so I've followed the fight to remove these monuments since it began. The company who was originally contracted to do the removal had to back out because those in opposition of removal torched the owner's Lamborghini. There's a reason this removal was done under the cover of darkness. Workers had to work in all black with their faces for their protection. It's sad that that kind of evil still exists in this country. That's the kind of ignorance this movement is fighting. Im well aware of why the civil war was fought and also well aware that not all parties who fought that war did so as some crusade against or for slavery. I'm for removing all monuments honoring people who fought and stood for the oppression of any group of people, not just mine.
Great post. You are certainly more informed about the ongoing events in regards to this matter. This was the first time I had heard about this happening in New Orleans and I support it. No one needs to glorify or honor slavery and I hope that by removing these monuments it helps to encourage and spark discussions about this particular time period and how it can NEVER be repeated.

@WavyCrockett Native peoples have been fighting for years to abolish Columbus Day but yet it is still being recognized as a Federal Holiday. I hope they do remove Jackson memorials every where. That man was a racist bigot but you and I both know that they will never remove Jackson's statue in DC. His actions at the Battle of New Orleans and defeat of the British will super secede any of the slaves that he owned or his involvement in the killing and removal of the Cherokee people.
 
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It's clear that those who are fighting for the preservation of the monuments are doing so in the name of upholding our history, good and bad. These folks are certainly not losing their **** sending death threats because they're rustled about racist monuments being taken down that celebrate a government which fought a war to overthrow the United States.

On the real though, the whole where do you stop argument is non-sense. Progress can start at any point when society is ready for it. The celebration of these people is highly offensive to blacks, any minorities, and any true patriot of the United States.

Instead of asking where does it stop how about asking where do we start?
 
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The Confederacy was a bunch of treasonous morons.

You can't claim Murica on one side and then claim Confederacy on the other.

Dudes just trying to hold on to the good ol' days when you had a perpetual underclass of slaves and could literally rule over people.

Good riddance, yo.
 
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scrubbing history is dumb, and what you're doing is giving supporters of da rebel flag for innocuous reasons (yes they do exist) martyrdom​ status.

besides, seen da State flag of their next door neighbors? heh.
 

RustyShackleford

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And lets be honest here regarding the Civil War, keeping statues up is what whitewashes it.

Saying it was just about states rights, ignoring it was the states' right to enslave black people, whitewashes it.

Claiming Lincoln was some benevolent savior of black people whitewashes it.

Not calling out seceding like the South did the biggest act of treason ever committed against America whitewashes it.

Ignoring how Reconstruction was botched (especially after Lincoln's death, great way to honor the man :rolleyes) and how much that ****** up black people to this day, and America as a whole, whitewashes it

To this day there are a large number of people in the white community, the South, and political right that have been on some strong "PC" steez regarding the Civil War. So please spare me the "PC" talk when the monuments to these traitors and racist get taken down.
 
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Good. Take the racists off the money too. I wanna see ODB on currency.
 
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As a former history major this does bother me a bit. America's history is flawed; just like its leaders. More and more I see society trying to become as 'PC' as possible. We can't change or undo our history, both good and bad. The best thing we can do is to learn and educate and not repeat the mistakes that we made. If we are going to remove all Confederate monuments are we going to remove Jefferson and Washington monuments? Are we going to remove any mentions of Andrew Jackson? What about statues for Sherman and Sheridan and the role they played in nearly exterminating Native Americans? My overall point is - if we start removing Confederacy monuments because they are offensive then we might as well not talk about our history overall because many of our so called 'founding fathers' had flaws 10x worse than any Confederate farmers.
 how are you a former history major?

They're still in history books. They're not being erased from history. Why would you want to honor a man on the side of slavery? That's baffling to me and it speaks volumes on people who'd want to be against this.
 
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RustyShackleford

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Playing devil's advocate for people that support the confederacy.

I would say I'm shocked, then I realize who is posting this. :rolleyes
 
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imagine if da current Egyptian government felt compelled to destroy da Pyramids over da transgressions of black jews during passover during da current climate...where do you draw da line? you don't open that Pandora's box.

judging historical monuments on da current whims of political/moral winds is dumb.

btw, get disrespectful in here at your peril.
 

RustyShackleford

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imagine if da current Egyptian government felt compelled to destroy da Pyramids over da transgressions of black jews during passover during da current climate...where do you draw da line? you don't open that Pandora's box.

judging historical monuments on da current whims of political/moral winds is dumb.

btw, get disrespectful in here at your peril.
What an asinine example
 
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