Document Type

Opinion

Publication Date

8-16-2017

Department

Civil War Era Studies

Abstract

After 152 years, Robert E. Lee is back in the headlines. But not in any way he could have imagined.

The “Unite the Right” forces descended on Charlottesville, Va., to protest calls for the removal of an equestrian statue of Lee that has been sitting in a city park since 1924. The larger question, however, was about whether the famous Confederate general was also a symbol of white supremacy.

The same issues were in play in May when a statue of Lee was removed from Lee Circle in New Orleans. There are also more than two dozen streets and schools named for Lee that have become debating points about symbols of white nationalism. One Army installation in Petersburg, Va., bears Lee’s name; another, Fort Hamilton in New York City, names a driveway for him. (excerpt)

Comments

Original version available from USA Today.

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