Baltimore takes down Confederate statues in middle of night

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In Lexington, Kentucky, Mayor Jim Gray announced Saturday that his original plans to relocate Confederate statues have been expedited due to this weekend's events.

The drive by civil rights groups and others to do away with Confederate monuments gained momentum after an avowed white supremacist murdered nine African-Americans at a church in 2015 in Charleston, South Carolina.

He argued the recent violence that broke out at a white supremacist rally that started as a protest of the removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee from a Charlottesville, Virginia park, should be an "inflection point in the broader debate" over whether the monuments of Confederate soldiers serve a goal in the public sphere.

Confederate-era monuments were quietly taken down in the middle of the night in the United States city of Baltimore.

Pugh said she has talked with contractors about logistics, contacted the Maryland Historical Trust for permissions and identified Confederate cemeteries to send some statues to.

Now, local governments across the country are calling for their city's Confederate monuments to be removed as well. Most of the dedications are in the South, but 24 are in the North and 21 in states that did not exist at the time of the Civil War.

Some say they mark history and honor heritage.

There are hundreds of similar confederate monuments in more than half the states.

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The debates have become heated.

I write this as one with a long record of fighting white supremacists and racists, as no great lover of the Confederacy, and as one who believes, and wrote, that the proper response to last weekend's events in Charlottesville is to completely condemn the white supremacists without trying to assert (im) moral equivalence between them and the counter-protesters. "In our community, the vast majority of people would like to get rid of that monument and build something that is a better contextualized representation of our shared racial history".

Pugh said she has requested several construction firms to "examine the process for removal of the monuments and provide the city with a proposal for removal".

It was one of the largest public rallies of white nationalist groups in years and one of the bloodiest confrontations yet over the future of a Confederate monument.

During the 2016 campaign, the flags came to mean something else for some people: a symbol of support for the candidacy of President Trump and a rebuke of sorts to the liberal forces, like political correctness, that he railed against while campaigning.

The Southern Poverty Law Center found some 1500 Confederate memorials across the country, and more than 700 of them are statues and monuments, and 10 USA military bases are named for Confederate officers.

They say it's time to put this part of history behind and remove the reminders of a painful past.

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