Dallas removes Robert E Lee statue from city park


#21

That’s a fantastic piece of sculpture. Whoever Mr Brady was who is listed on the base if he is the sculptor he had a high level of talent. I only lately realized how much talent it takes to really be good at this when watching stonemasons in action. There is also a monument to the Irish who fought on the Union side which was deliberately commissioned by a former Confederate Irishman and which was done to try and indicate a process of healing. Seems like they had come somewhat further down that road and people seem to be wandering back off it.


#22

Ah yes here we go, the Irish Brigade monument at Arlington. Most of us in Ireland are well aware of this regiment as General Meagher who was one of it’s senior officers is a national hero in Ireland:-1:

http://gettysburg.stonesentinels.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Irish_Brigade_Cross-Lg_10111.jpg


#23

Well I suppose it is ok that I am offended with my “right wing spin” that all of these monuments are being destroyed. There is ACTUAL effort right now to scrape the confederate images off of the side of Stone Mountain which would cost a fortune. It is art as well as a memorial. Groups like ISIS are also offended by art. Where will it stop?


#24

Thanks JharekCarnelian, it is beautiful.


#25

There’s a statue of an Irish Wolfhound at the bottom that is not so apparent in that photo. Hilariously when the statue was made the breed was virtually extinct and the plaque on the bottom notes that, the breed has since been re-introduced, although some argue the modern dog is not really an authentic wolfhound and more akin to other breeds. The stonework you shared an image of is also of exceptionally high quality. Let it be, for all their faults or virtues these were men who lived and breathed once as we do now. They were not monsters in human form and this latter-day rush to obliterate or remove these memorials all seems rather well after the facts and keeps re-opening old wounds and inciting anger in your nation I note.


#26

Comparing what ISIS is doing to taking down these statues is hyperbolic to the point of being laughable.

It’s a balancing act. I don’t think monuments to the Confederate soldiers is terribly inappropriate. It’s the deifying the leaders in the 20s and 60s during civil rights eras that bother me. Where we end up with statues like this: http://sdvoice.info/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/nomonuments_fas_wc_web120-750x400.jpg

Or like this: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/local/opz9j6/picture27514555/alternates/FREE_640/CountyFlag5

A cursory survey of history of those times shows a harkening back to the war era and its “heroes” in counter-civil rights movements.


#27

Long live Ireland and the Irish!


#28

Yeah that’s the other Irish Brigade monument, far more modern. I tend to prefer the older one. There are several different Irish Brigades though and the monument to the one in S.Africa has drawn some arguments over the years as that lot fought on the side of the Boers. You find monuments to Irish troops and soldiers in some very odd locations due to the fact of Irishmen serving in so many military forces. One of Serbia’s national heroes is an Irishman and has a whacking great giant monument there for example.


#29

Yes Rhubard, I’ll agree the wording is not pleasant on the monuments you present but the fact is many on the Union side believed exactly the same and were not shy about expressing it either. Scientific racism and belief in the destiny of some races to govern others was unfortunately the order of the day. Quite a lot of the books we regard as classic literature contain shades of that, however they also contain much that is valuable if we can use our discretion to look past those attitudes, some of which were well meaning and paternatlistic if ultimately flawed outlooks which rested on dubious ideas about differences between races. If we are going to start applying the censor’s pen retroactively we will be doing so for a very, very long time and it will become quite a task to know when to stop once we start.


#30

An extreme example to be sure, but there aren’t a lot of examples of those that celebrate tearing down monuments around the world. JharekCarnelian mentioned some, I remember the Taliban destroyed some beautiful Buddhist statues in Afghanistan, that people around the world offered to come in and save, but they tore it down anyway. Sometimes they are former political leaders, other times it’s religious. The leftists, since you cite right wing spin, have their own brand of spin, and they are descending on the South from all over the country to take care of business.


#31

Here’s an example of Irish soldiers who spring to mind. The San Patrick’s Battalion who fought on the side of the Mexicans and of whom many members were hung as deserters. In Mexico of course they are huge national heroes, in Ireland there are statues to them and places named after them. In the US they are seen as traitors. Shows how perspective can alter the view of who should be remembered or not.


#32

Whatever the attitudes of the time were in the North towards African-Americans is irrelevant. “They were racist in the north too” doesn’t impact “these statues were monuments to institutionalized racism”. it’s whataboutism at its worst. “I broke the lamp… But, but Billy stained the rug!”

Comparing Confederate statues that were erected in the 20s during the counter-movement against civil rights to an ancient carving of a religious figure is utterly ludicrous. The monuments aren’t of the same “caliber”, their motives aren’t comparable. Nothing about it is, except that it involves statues.


#34

81 years ago certain groups of Americans would have been too afraid to ask for its removal.


#35

I’m one of the people that thinks Robert E. Lee’s generalship is highly overrated, and I think he made the wrong decision… But he was still an American soldier and he deserves respect.

Sad that the people of our modern day have so much hatred in their heart, that even most of the Union soldiers didn’t have.

“We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory will swell when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”
-Abraham Lincoln


#36

Not really. It’s a slippery slop. Once all the monuments are gone, the next step is to change how the facts are presented in the history books.

There was much more to Robert E Lee than his service during the Civil War, but that’s been lost.


#37

Exactly, I would rather take a warts and all approach to history. Lee never owned slaves I believe and indeed seems to have been fairly opposed to slavery himself and disliked it as an institution. However the complexity and paradoxes and contradictions that are real history are now lost in a world where getting rid of statues of long dead people whom most living people are not overly familiar with is seen as a pressing need rather than addressing actual ongoing issues. Removing Lee’s statue will not ensure anyone has a better job, education or anything useful. It will provide people a glow to feel good about for a short while to show how they have removed symbols of oppression etc. etc.


#38

I believe he did own, but freed them prior to the Civil War. As a history major in college, researching why he felt compelled to lead the confederate army was fascinating.


#39

I stand corrected on that point. He seemed conflicted about joining or staying out of the whole mess. I don’t really see the point in doing a bit of airbrushing of history at this point via removing these monuments. I would offer the experience of my own country and wife’s where that worked oh so spectacularly well…


#40

If anything I think a plaque could be added that further explains the thinking of the time, and why the philosophical POV of that time is no longer acceptable. I just don’t like taking down monuments, it’s too much like censorship. First the monuments, then the chapters in the history books, then any and all references in any shape or form…just my humble opinion.


#41

True, just as at the time the the Buddhas of Bamiyan were made, no one had the courage to ask for their removal.

But as the society changed, they eventually recognized the evils of paganism, and the local government removed them too.


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