Multiple state leaders are concerned about what could be a new trend in removing historic statues that highlight the past in the Volunteer State. One of those leaders include State Representative Mike Sparks who lives in Smyrna, Tennessee. He commented on the City of Memphis removing historic statues Wednesday night.
The concern stems from a decision made by the Memphis, Tennessee City Council to remove statues in Memphis parks honoring Jefferson Davis and Nathan Bedford Forrest. After the decision was reached, the statues were removed shortly after a Wednesday night meeting (12/20/17). This came after the Memphis City council voted unanimously to sell the two parks for $1,000 each. The releasing of the parks for $1,000 each was allegedly done to avoid legal restrictions on the city removing the monuments.
Attorney Doug Jones is one of many reviewing what occurred in Memphis...
State Representative Dawn White noted that laws regarding history may have to be looked at a little closer when the new legislative session begins...
Candidate for Governor Mae Beavers released the following:
Conservative Republican candidate for Governor Mae Beavers says she is very concerned about the decision of the Memphis City Council to immediately remove statues in Memphis parks honoring Jefferson Davis and Nathan Bedford Forrest Wednesday night immediately after the Memphis City council voted unanimously to take action to sell the two parks for $1000 each in order to avoid legal restrictions on the city removing the monuments.
"Our history is not perfect, nor are the historical figures who helped shape our state and nation," Beavers said, "but it is wrong to destroy these public monuments suddenly and in the dark of night in order to cater to the politically motivated demands of those who want to cleanse our history. There are some individuals and groups who want to promote a divisive agenda using claims of racism and bigotry against anyone who respects history and wants to preserve it. Sadly that rhetoric, and weak-kneed politicians unwilling to stand up to them and their threats of violence if they don't get their way, is creating a climate where hysteria seems to matter more than history."
"Removing these historical monuments won't help a single child in Memphis do better in school. Perhaps the Memphis City Council should worry more about the abysmal test scores being produced in their city schools rather than using removal of monuments as a way to distract from their failures. Removing these historical monuments won't make the City of Memphis a bit more safe from the violence that plagues it daily and the nearly 200 homicides this year. Perhaps the Memphis City Council should focus more on creating a safer community for its citizens rather than using monuments to distract from the fact that none of those statues are a threat to the safety and security of the parks where they sit. And removing those statues will not create any new jobs or reduce the regulations that hamper small business growth in the city. Perhaps those issues deserve more attention by the Memphis City Council if they really want to improve the quality of life in Memphis.