News

Committee on Confederate monuments begins work

The N.C. Historical Commission’s committee on confederate monuments held its first meeting Monday afternoon by teleconference, setting goals and discussing how to tackle the controversial issue.

Back in September, the full commission put off a decision on removing three Confederate monuments from the State Capitol grounds. Instead, it formed a five-person committee to study the politically fraught issue, which the North Carolina General Assembly dropped into their laps with a 2015 law that makes it more difficult to remove such statues.

The committee consists of:

  • Chris Fonvielle, an associate professor of history at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.
  • Valerie Johnson, the Mott Distinguished Professor of Women’s Studies and Director of Africana Women’s Studies at Greensboro’s Bennett College and chair of the North Carolina African American Heritage Commission.
  • Noah Reynolds, a real estate investor and entrepreneur and trustee of the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation.
  • Sam Dixon, an attorney and preservation advocate from Edenton.
  • David Ruffin, a banker and chairman of the commission.

During Monday’s initial meeting, the committee laid out its goals. Among them:

1) Seeking legal input from the law schools at Duke University, Elon University, N.C. Central, UNC-Chapel Hill, Wake Forest University, Campbell University and from the UNC School of government.

2) Seeking outside input from historical experts, including David Cecelski, a North Carolina historian whose award-winning work on race in North Carolina has often touched on the Civil War and reconstruction era. The committee is also seeking input from historians at the state’s historically black colleges and universities and the Civil War and Reconstruction history museum now being planned in Fayetteville.

3) Creating a web portal for public comment, which they will also accept via traditional mail and holding at least one public forum before they present their work to the full commission.

“I think the state of NC deserves the rationale behind any decision and so it’s not just a public hearing but also explaining,” Ruffin said. “I absolutely feel a public hearing is quite critical to our mission.”

The committee has not yet set its next meeting date, but hopes to do so soon.

 

 

One Comment


  1. David Z Smoak

    January 25, 2018 at 1:15 pm

    I am not a native NC citizen, but I have lived here for over seven years after retiring from the Army. I am not emotionally involved in this debate, so both sides can attack me, lol. I would like two questions addressed by the Commission before any vote on removing statues is made. 1. Do Union states have Civil War memorials and how do they differ from the questionable NC ones? 2. What is the possibility of adding statues honoring the sacrifices of Union soldiers in the same area as the Confederates to “offset” the perceived racist message of Confederate-only memorials?

Check Also

Rumors of white supremacist rally spurs concerns, preparations at UNC

UNC students will rally this afternoon to oppose ...

Top Stories from NCPW

  • News
  • Commentary

Any protection the courts offer Dreamers is temporary, but all eyes are on the U.S. Supreme Court to [...]

The good news is that the levels of GenX in Wilmington’s drinking water is testing consistently belo [...]

This week NC Child and the NC Institute of Medicine release the 2018 Child Health Report Card, an an [...]

North Carolina’s public school system is one of the lowest funded in the nation when adjusted for co [...]

In “Lessons on political speech, academic freedom, and university governance from the new North Caro [...]

Cracks are forming in the NRA’s death grip on American politics At some point, it’s going to happen. [...]

As the General Assembly wraps up its weirdly timed and generally ill-conceived winter session, it wo [...]

The post Dumb & Dumber & Dumbest appeared first on NC Policy Watch. [...]