A monument placed in memory of Confederate soldiers and their descendants will be removed from the Tarrant County courthouse grounds. The commissioners court voted 4-0 to remove the monument on Tuesday. Commissioner J.D. Johnson abstained.
Commissioner Roy Charles Brooks proposed the removal of the monument and that it be placed in a temporary location until the county can find “an appropriate place to display it in a proper historical context.”
The monument was placed in 1953 by the United Daughters of the Confederacy and the inscription reads:
“In Memory of
1861 – 1865
and their descendants
who served in
Spanish American War
World War I
World War II”
Dozens of citizens, both black and white, spoke to the commissioners court and expressed their views about whether the monument should stay or go.
Sheila Randolph, a black resident of Fort Worth, was recently elected and sworn in as the president of the United Daughters of the Confederacy chapter. She asked the court to leave the monument which she said was erected to honor Confederate veterans and their descendants who fought in other wars, not to show white supremacy.
Most of those who spoke in favor of keeping the monument expressed some concern about the impact its removal would have on history. Dr. Jeffrey Mitchell asked that the court consider the “danger of removing distasteful parts of history” and urged them not to “fall to today’s political whims and twenty-first-century sensibilities.”
Those who wished to see the monument removed pointed out that it is seen by many as a symbol of racism. “It is a vile monument to racism on the very grounds where justice is supposed to be upheld,” school teacher Amy Hunter told the commissioners.
Reverend Ryan Price of Broadway Baptist Church asked the court to remove the monument as “a deeply symbolic step” needed to aid in “healing the deep wounds in our nation.”
Commissioner Devan Allen said she cares about history, but that she was “much more concerned about the future” and voted for the removal. She also urged citizens who voiced their opinion about the monument to stay involved.
“I request that you remain just as involved in decisions about how we use this county’s resources,” she added.
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Kim Roberts is a reporter for the Texan in the DFW metroplex area where she has lived for over twenty years. She has a Juris Doctor from Baylor University Law School and a Bachelor's in government from Angelo State University. In her free time, Kim home schools her daughter and coaches high school extemporaneous speaking and apologetics. She has been happily married to her husband for 23 years, has three wonderful children, and two dogs.