The Confederate capital is under siege, and for good reason, too.
Amid the George Floyd protests against racial injustices, demonstrators in Richmond, VA. toppled a Jefferson Davis statue and defaced a Robert E. Lee statue, as calls for removing Confederate monuments entirely intensify.
Confederate beliefs represent hatred and racism. To have monuments dedicated to them is absurd.
Virginia already began the process of removing tributes of its tumultuous past. In 2017, the Fairfax County School Board voted to change J.E.B Stuart High School to Justice High School, ridding itself of the Confederate ties the name holds.
But, the state still has a long way to go, starting with those statues. Renaming a school when there is an entire memorial dedicated to the Confederacy two hours away is ludicrous.
For not only the state but also the country, to truly recover from the scars of the Civil War, it must detach itself from the ideologies of the past, while also recognizing the history prevalent within the land.
To act as though the Civil War never happened, that slavery was never present or that many prominent leaders of America were never Confederates would be counterproductive. But the argument that erecting statues to essentially commemorate these things somehow preserves history is flawed.
Teaching American history in schools is a responsible way of allowing the next generations to acknowledge the struggles that led to the country being the way it is today. Maintaining memorials in honor of Confederate figures is not.
Glorifying Confederate figures of the past only fuels present-day racism within the country. As long as the statues stay standing, the U.S. will not be able to rectify its history.