Activism

There's a Protest Battle Brewing in New Orleans Over the Removal of Confederate Monuments

The city council is following through on a 2015 promise to scrap all Confederate monuments from city grounds.

Photo Credit: NoneOfTheAboveNOLA‏ / Twitter

Hundreds of protesters faced off in a scuffle Sunday following New Orleans' long-awaited removal of Confederate monuments beginning last month.

In Lee Circle, a memorial honoring Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee, groups from both sides gathered, with over 700 combined demonstrators, say local police.

“Hey hey, ho ho, white supremacy’s got to go," chanted Take 'Em Down NOLA, a local organization marching in celebration of the city's vote 16 months ago to remove three additional Confederate monuments.

“It’s a part of our heritage, and we want it to stay,” said Michael Hill, president of the League of the South, in response. 

Some monument supporters had traveled as far as California to participate in the action, but their numbers were dwarfed by counter-demonstrators. Just a dozen total showed up to protest the monuments' removal.

Three arrests were made during the joint protests. All were charged with disturbing the peace. As of Monday, the statues of Confederate president Jefferson Davis, Gen. Robert E. Lee and Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard remain, and traffic in the area has resumed.  

Ahead of the Monumental Task Committee's press conference Monday, Take 'Em Down NOLA issued a promise to the local community.

"We’re finally getting some white supremacy monuments down," coordinator Malcolm Suber announced. "We’ll keep fighting until they’re all down."

Watch:

Alexandra Rosenmann is an AlterNet associate editor. Follow her @alexpreditor.

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