Virginia Committee Kills Bill to Allow Local Control of Confederate Monuments

Sen. Jennifer Wexton (D)

Senate Bill 444, the Memorial for Veterans bill, introduced in the Virginia Senate by Senator Jennifer T. Wexton:

Provides that a locality may remove, relocate, or alter a war monument or memorial, regardless of when erected.

The Committee on Local Government, comprised of 7 Republicans and 6 Democrats voted along party lines to “Pass by indefinitely” Wexton’s bill. ┬áThe 7 Republicans voting to kill the bill were Senators Stanley, Hanger, DeSteph, Dunnavant, Chase, Sturtevant, and Carrico. ┬áVoting “no” on the motion to kill the bill were Democrats Marsden, Favola, Lewis, Surovell, McPike, and McClellan.

SB 444 would have stricken language passed in the Virginia legislature in 1890.

If such are erected, it shall be unlawful for the authorities of the locality, or any other person or persons, to disturb or interfere with any monuments or memorials so erected, or to prevent its citizens from taking proper measures and exercising proper means for the protection, preservation and care of same. For purposes of this section, “disturb or interfere with” includes removal of, damaging or defacing monuments or memorials, or, in the case of the War Between the States, the placement of Union markings or monuments on previously designated Confederate memorials or the placement of Confederate markings or monuments on previously designated Union memorials.

Wexton, a Democrat, represents parts of Fairfax and Loudon counties, and was elected to the Virginia Senate in 2014. Wexton is a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2018, challenging the incumbent, Republican Barbara Comstock.

The Myth of the Kindly General Lee – The Atlantic

Removal of Lee Statue

Read the great article, The Myth of the Kindly General Lee, in the June 4, 2017 post on The Atlantic website, by Adam Serwer. Serwer offers several great points to refute the assertion that Confederate General Robert E. Lee was a great and honorable man as his supporters so often claim.

In Lee’s own words, in an 1856 letter, argues that blacks are better off in slavery than they were in their native Africa.

I think it however a greater evil to the white man than to the black race, & while my feelings are strongly enlisted in behalf of the latter, my sympathies are more strong for the former. The blacks are immeasurably better off here than in Africa, morally, socially & physically. The painful discipline they are undergoing, is necessary for their instruction as a race, & I hope will prepare & lead them to better things. How long their subjugation may be necessary is known & ordered by a wise Merciful Providence. Their emancipation will sooner result from the mild & melting influence of Christianity, than the storms & tempests of fiery Controversy.