you're reading...

Cornelius News

Unity in Community asks for removal of Confederate monument 


June 15. Unity in Community, a local group seeking to achieve racial equity in North Mecklenburg, is asking the Mt. Zion Monument Association to take down the Confederate Monument in Cornelius.

The monument is located in front of Mt. Zion United Methodist Church, but not on church property. It was erected in 1910 with a huge dedication ceremony that included dignitaries from around the state.

There are around 120 Confederate monuments around the state; hundreds more in dozens of states. The Mt. Zion Monument Association, a private entity that does little more than own and maintain the monument, is not associated with the church.

This past week, the co-senior pastors of Mt. Zion also asked the association to remove the monument. The association responded with a statement saying association trustees would explore all options to “protect and save” the statue. It has been vandalized twice in the recent past.

Unity in Community dates back to 2017 when local clergy, including Rev. Joel Simpson, former assistant pastor at Mt. Zion, organized a prayer vigil in the wake of a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va. The rally resulted in the death of one counter-protester.

The Cornelius Confederate monument was erected decades after the Civil War, during an era of repressive Jim Crow laws and terrorism, according to Pam Jones, president, and Sue Rankin-White, secretary/treasurer, of Unity in Community.

“To most African Americans, this monument represents white supremacy and the terror and injustice inflicted on black people throughout the history of this country. It still serves to intimidate and strike fear, as was its original intent,” they said in a prepared statement.

Unity in Community, which received the LKN Chamber Diversity Champion award in 2018, is urging the Monument Association “to proceed in due haste to do the right thing and take down the monument, freeing the community once and for all from this oppressive symbol of White  Supremacy over our black brothers and sisters.”

“Only then can racial healing and racial equity begin,” their message said.




6 Responses to “Unity in Community asks for removal of Confederate monument ”

  1. Thank Hod that this racist monumrnt is going to finally be taken down. I hate seeing it when I drive past it. It’s a symbol of white supremacy and those days are behind us. Our community needs to come together to take it down and heal.

    Posted by Tanya Lam | June 15, 2020, 2:17 pm
  2. Makes me sick to hear these comments. That was the past and no one today had anything to do with it. So just leave it alone.

    Posted by Sharon Henson | June 15, 2020, 2:19 pm
  3. This is one of the only memorials paid for by families of fallen soldiers. It is not symbolic of a specific person but to remember those who died. Of the people who fought and died only a small percentage were slave owners. The majority of the 1million casualties were poor common folk just defending their home state. Removing the statue will not help bring peace. Build another monument next to it dedicated to the racial injustice. This way a discussion of history and how we as a country have progressed can be shown. Look at other places like Egypt or Rome. These ancient places were built by slaves and remain and or considered ‘wounders’ by some. You can not legislate love. Love and compassion is the only way to heal. Offending others is not the answer to being offended as hard as it is. Keep the statue. Build a MLK monument or something else next to it.

    Posted by John Brown | June 15, 2020, 4:02 pm
  4. Let the monument serve as a reminder to whatever you want to be a reminded. For many other North Carolinians the monument is a reminder of their ancestors who died fighting for their state or more likely,their friends and family. The vast majority of southerners were not slave owners.

    If you feel so strongly, use the monument as a rally point for anti racism rallies.

    Is their any record of this statue being used as a pro slavery pro racism or a pro white supremacy rally point?

    Was it put up as a memorial to the institution of slavery?

    From what I see with my own eyes, blacks and whites get along relatively well these days.

    But I also know that Peace between the races can not be used for leverage by toxic politicians. Thus hate, acrimony and violence need to be drum up to generate the desired electoral outcome in November.

    This is quite obvious.

    Posted by Douglas Schmitt | June 15, 2020, 4:34 pm
  5. I request the monument stay as it is

    Randle Montgomery

    Posted by Randle Montgomery | June 15, 2020, 5:34 pm
  6. The argument that a monument like this represents “heritage, not hate” ignores the near-universal heritage of African Americans whose ancestors were enslaved by millions in the South. It trivializes their pain, their history and their concerns about racism — whether it’s the racism of the past or that of today. This monument was erected during the Jim Crow era, and the time for its removal is long overdue.

    Posted by Alisia Bergsman | June 18, 2020, 3:45 pm

Post a Comment