Culture Wars/Current Controversies

A Confederate Statue Graveyard Could Help Bury the Old South

There is a statue of Lenin in Seattle, which I have no problem with, although it’s probably offensive to Russian-Americans, Eastern European-Americans, not to mention Asian-Americans and Latinos who have lived under Communist tyrannies or experienced Communist terrorism.

By Jordan Brasher and Derek H. Alderman

The Conversation

Where do old Confederate statues go when they die? The former Soviet bloc countries could teach the U.S. something about dealing with monuments from a painful past.

An estimated 114 Confederate symbols have been removed from public view since 2015. In many cases, these cast-iron Robert E. Lees and Jefferson Davises were sent to storage.

If the aim of statue removal is to build a more racially just South, then, as many analysts have pointed out, putting these monuments in storage is a lost opportunity. Simply unseating Confederate statues from highly visible public spaces is just the first step in a much longer process of understanding, grieving and mending the wounds of America’s violent past. Merely hiding away the monuments does not necessarily change the structural racism that birthed them.


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