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How do we think about removing controversial statues in the US?
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The statue removal movement is an attempt to erase white Southern history.

Since the removal movement targets statues of white Southern historical figures, it is likely that this is an attack on white Southern history.

The Argument

The statue removal movement is an attempt to erase white, Southern history. For the most part, activists are calling for the removal of statues that depict famous individuals in white history, like Robert E. Lee[1], Abraham Lincoln[2], and Thomas Jefferson. [3] What do all of these historical figures have in common? They were all white Southerners. Although protesters claim that their anger is due to these figures' racist opinions, the movement has targeted people that did not support racist institutions. A statue of Ulysses S. Grant was recently toppled by a group of protesters.[4] Grant was a general for the Union Army, which fought to end slavery. A monument to Abraham Lincoln has also faced significant backlash. [5] Abraham Lincoln signed the famous Emancipation Proclamation, which was a significant step toward freedom for slaves. If this movement is truly a crusade against racism, why remove the statues of two men who worked to abolish slavery? In light of this, it is likely that supporters of this movement do not simply want to remove symbols of racism from our public spaces. Instead, they want to use this argument as an excuse to erase important figures of white, Southern history.

Counter arguments

Proponents

Premises

[P1] Most controversial statues depict white people and famous figures in white history. [P2] The people who want to remove these statues want to remove them to erase white history.

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://apnews.com/34d5451fe96f0fc684d2de235bb9cb0b
  2. https://www.npr.org/sections/live-updates-protests-for-racial-justice/2020/07/01/886445904/boston-to-remove-statue-depicting-abraham-lincoln-with-freed-black-man-at-his-fe
  3. https://www.wweek.com/news/2020/06/20/portland-man-describes-tearing-down-thomas-jefferson-statue-its-not-vandalism/
  4. https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/503685-protesters-tear-down-statues-of-union-general-ulysses-s-grant-national
  5. https://www.npr.org/sections/live-updates-protests-for-racial-justice/2020/07/01/886445904/boston-to-remove-statue-depicting-abraham-lincoln-with-freed-black-man-at-his-fe
This page was last edited on Friday, 10 Jul 2020 at 19:32 UTC

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