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Hours after the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, left three dead on Saturday, a Kentucky mayor announced his plan to relocate of two Confederate monuments near Lexington’s former courthouse.
Lexington Mayor Jim Gray said he was going to unveil his relocation plan next week, but the “tragic events in Charlottesville have accelerated the announcement.”
I am taking action to relocate the Confederate statues. We have thoroughly examined this issue, and heard from many of our citizens.— Mayor Jim Gray (@JimGrayLexKY) August 12, 2017
The tragic events in Charlottesville today have accelerated the announcement I intended to make next week.— Mayor Jim Gray (@JimGrayLexKY) August 12, 2017
The moments are of John Hunt Morgan, known as the “Thunderbolt of the Confederacy” who fought for the Confederate and equipped a militia company; and John C. Breckinridge, a former vice president, Confederate secretary of war, and slave owner. They currently reside in the shadows of Lexington’s old courthouse, which is set for a $32 million renovation to become a visitors’ center that includes a bourbon bar. Gray wants the space to be a “progressive beacon of the new South,” according to the Washington Post.
The statues aren’t going very far, though. If the city council and the Kentucky Military Heritage Commission give a thumbs’ up, then the Confederate leaders will be housed in a nearby park honoring veterans.
“It’s the right thing to do,” he told the Post. “But doing it right is just as important.”
Jessica Machado is the IRL editor of the Daily Dot. Previously, she was an associate editor at Rolling Stone. Her work has been published in the Washington Post, Elle, Vice, Salon, BuzzFeed, Guernica, Bitch, Bust, the Cut, the Awl, the Toast, among others.