There will be quite a lot of people upset by this decision – mostly racists who tend to say they aren’t racist. They claim to only be honoring their heritage (of defending slavery), and that the statues were commemorating participants (traitors to their country) who fought in a war against the North trying to tell the South what to do (like not continuing chattel slavery – the practice of breeding human beings like farm animals, except these ones they liked to rape and then sell the resulting children of rape.)
Occasionally historians would “romanticize” it (lie to make it palatable) by saying our forefathers loved their enslaved baby-makers, as Thomas Jefferson did with Sally Hemmings, but you cannot really love someone if you own them, unless the ownership allows both parties the ability to consent without the threat of punishment.
Consent is the difference between sex and rape, folks.
Yes, our honored “forefathers” were tax cheats, murderers and rapists, but that’s probably not what they taught you in school, is it? Instead they used big shiny lie-words like “Freedom” and “Liberty” to describe the small, ugly truths of theft, genocide, slavery, murder, annexation, apartheid, and systemic institutionalized racism.
…and so, now, referendums will show up on ballots, and cheaply cast statues will come down – set in place to reinforce and serve as reminders of White Supremacy, regardless of their stated intent.
Some statues will be moved to parks and gardens, and have plaques attached, reminding people of the murder of indigenous people, the enslavement and murder of captured Africans after their histories, language, given names, and origins of heritage were erased, and statues placed by the Daughters of the Confederacy at times when Black people were beginning to gain wealth and power, before Jim Crow laws and riots, and white men in their wives’ good White sheets transformed into symbols of terrorism, on horseback, burning torches and crosses firmly established the state of oppression and the rules Black people were expected to live by if we did not want to expect to be murdered.
Those rules have changed, and the new Jim Crow, private prisons, red-lining, institutionalized racism, and living under the White Gaze and standards which impose a maze of obstacles, pitfalls and penalties where a White person can fail and get back up and fail and get back up, and get multiple chances at success, where a Black person can just appear to break a rule, and their life is ruined, as is their family’s life and their children’s lives.
There’s a reason why more of us are dying of COVID-19 in the land of the “Free” but maybe soon, at least we won’t have to:
Walk past the statues of men who conducted experiments on Black women without anesthetic who created the foundations for gynecology in this country.
Men who murdered tribes of indigenous people and shuffled them off to land where nothing grows,
Men who were tasked with governing stolen land and decided they were not given rights to speak so they were granted rights to steal the land from the thieves who stole it first after murdering the indigenous people who occupied it and called it all “discovery.”
Men who led armies of poor and uneducated White men into battle, told the ignorant that it was about Northern aggression, but in private lounges, boardrooms, and in correspondence, it was always in defense of slavery.
It was always about continuing to allow the machine to run that ground the bodies of enslaved Africans, murdered indigenous people, imported cheap labor with restricted rights, and turned it into the foundations of wealth that powers Wall Street, the oldest banks, the oldest insurance companies, and the names that whisper to you from University gallery walls, and trusts and endowments that still quietly run this country, pay for privatized prisons, armed enclaves, and private rows of mansions on exclusive islands and coastal wildly wealthy communities.
Oh yes, we blame it all on the South, but you really need to know where all the money ended up, right?
Essay in reference to this article:
Virginia Cities Now Have the Power To Remove Confederate Statues