Richmond Can Remove Last Confederate Statue, Judge Rules
A Virginia judge has ruled that the last Confederate statue should be removed from the grounds of the Richmond City Hall. The case of a man arguing that Robert E. Lee should be remembered with a monument on the National Civil War Centennial, a memorial group called the Sons of Confederate Veterans, also called for the removal of the statue to make room for a statue of General Robert E. Lee. In January, the judge ordered that the statue be moved to the grounds of the state Capitol, located in the City of Richmond, with an injunction in place to prevent anyone from tearing it down. The judge found that the removal of the statue would irreparably harm the historic district. The issue dates back more than 150 years, when the city ordered the removal of the statue, but the judge didn’t have to go that far to find a way to stop it. He issued the injunction to prevent anyone from tearing down the statue and allowed anyone who wants to have it remain on the grounds of the Capitol. The Sons of Confederate Veterans group filed a lawsuit challenging the judge’s ruling, but it was ultimately dismissed last month. Lee himself didn’t want the statue to leave the grounds of the Capitol. As the Times-Dispatch reports, General Lee is a man who does not like to have his name associated with the kind of statues that he fought to save from being put on public display. The judge said that no one will be allowed to make any modifications to the statue. The judge also ordered that the statue of General Lee be returned to the group. General Lee will remain on public display at the statue’s former location at the State Capital. The judge’s ruling also came with a warning that if the Sons of Confederate Veterans want to challenge the judge’s ruling to have the statue removed, then they will “face swift legal action with the possibility of being held in contempt.” According to the ruling, the statue will be torn down next week, in accordance with a court-approved removal plan.
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