The inscription on a monument in New Orleans dedicated to the “honor of Americans on both sides of the conflict who died in the Battle of Liberty Place” ends with the advice “A conflict of the past that should teach lessons for the future.”
That lesson is lost on left-leaning members of the City Council of New Orleans, which, like so many southern cities, is seeking to cleanse itself of reminders of past unrest, during — or in the case of this memorial, shown below — after the Civil War.
As The Advocate reports, an anonymous donor has offered to pony up $125,000 to help rid the Crescent City of these odious reminders.
The article notes that the question of whether to remove the four monuments — which include a statue of Robert E. Lee, a tribute to Jefferson Davis, a statue of Civil War general P.G.T. Beauregard, and the above-mentioned memorial — has been a point of heated debate:
Meetings held as part of the process have featured passionate arguments, and occasionally accusations and recriminations, from both sides. Those seeking to take the monuments down have said they represent a legacy of white supremacy and honor a war fought to preserve slavery, while monument supporters have argued they are part of the city’s history and removing them would be forgetting or whitewashing the past.
Andy Kopplin, a chief administrative officer for Democratic Mayor Mitch Landrieu, is quoted as saying:
It is true that these landmarks have served for decades as geographic compass points on the city’s grid, but how can this geographic compass compare to a great city’s moral compass?
It is worth noting in passing that the Battle of Liberty Place was an attempted insurrection by a paramilitary group made up largely of Confederate veterans that called itself the White League. The fighting, which pitted the group against metropolitan police and state militia, lasted for three days. At the end of the fighting, 100 people lay dead.
The political affiliation of the White League? They were a wing of the Democratic Party.
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