The issue of statue removal comes down to this proposition: The government should not honor people whose claim to fame is that they fought a war in defense of the evil institution of slavery.
Removing Confederate statues does not erase history. History is found in schools and university courses and in books — not on statues. Statues are erected to honor the persons themselves. No one claims that we should erase the Confederacy and its leaders from the historical record. We should remember them and continue to study their history. We just should not honor them.
Why are there are no statues to Reconstruction governors and senators or black political leaders, not to mention the leaders of slave revolts?
A black woman writes in the NY Times:
“If there are those who want to remember the legacy of the Confederacy, if they want monuments, well, then, my body is a monument. My skin is a monument.
“I am a black, Southern woman, and of my immediate white male ancestors, all of them were rapists. My very existence is a relic of slavery and Jim Crow.
“White Southern men — my ancestors — took what they wanted from women they did not love, over whom they had extraordinary power, and then failed to claim their children.
“The white people I come from fought and died for their Lost Cause. And I ask you now, who dares to tell me to celebrate them? Who dares to ask me to accept their mounted pedestals?”