Charlottesville does not have a statue of Robert E. Lee the plantation owner, nor Robert E. Lee of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, nor of Robert E. Lee who served in the Mexican War, nor even Robert E. Lee the racist slave owner and college president.
Charlottesville does not have a statue of Stonewall Jackson the dyslexic scholar, nor of Stonewall Jackson the college president.
Charlottesville has statues of traitors in action, statues of traitorous soldiers who killed tens of thousands of U.S. Army troops. Immortalised in bronze are two men on horseback in the uniform of an Army committed to destroying the United States and enslaving humans.
This is not about “fine folks” or erasing history. This is about what a community chooses to celebrate, and what a community chooses to teach its children.
And now is a time for moral leadership to challenge amoral leadership.
- Ira Socol