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Confederate legacy Robert E Lee causes US to change name | Competitive News

As the United States continues to struggle with this kind of relationship and the symbols it respects Sponsors who fought to keep slavery in the 1860s, regions across the country are considering new ways to remember one of the most prominent rebel leaders: General Robert E Lee.

To this day, more houses, roads, monuments and institutions bearing Lee’s name. Thousands of children are taught in schools named Lee; “Robert E Lee Day” is still celebrated every year in January in a few countries, and the form of the late deceased is found in memorials and memorials in many cities.

Lee, a decorated Virginia soldier who fought in the U.S. before the Civil War and married into George Washington’s family, played a key role in Confederacy in the fight against slavery.

For others, Lee was a man who respected his native Virginia; for others, his idea of ​​a war with the government in an attempt to overthrow the US made him a rebel.

But some are also considering continuing to be in a relationship with Lee or changing the path to a man whose legacy divides Americans to this day.

“What is happening in our community is a decision not to be made by people who have died in the past, but by us today,” Adam Domby, a historian and author of The False Cause: Fraud, Fabrication, and White Supremacy in Confederate Memory, told Al Jazeera. “There’s a difference between learning about Civil War and celebrating Confederacy, and I think that’s a big difference we need.”

Photo showing General Robert E Lee dedicating his troops from Northern Virginia to the Union Army General Ulysses S Grant in the room of Wilmer McLean’s house on April 9, 1865, in Appomattox, Virginia [Illustration by Ed Vebell/Getty Images]

In June, several organizations agreed to reconsider how to deal with Lee or leave his name altogether: Lee’s first home, located near Washington, DC, was reopened after a multi-year renovation that emphasized the lives of black slaves; a Florida school called Lee dropped his name; Charlottesville, Virginia, voted to remove his statue from a public place; The Virginia Supreme Court agreed to hear the reasons for the removal of the statue in Richmond; and the university named by Lee spoke out in a heated debate to keep his name.

“Lee always has a special place in racial thought,” said Eric Foner, Pulitzer’s Civil War historian he wrote in The New York Times. “The pros and cons of its history reflect the evolutionary process of American identity – the way we understand the relationship between them, the causes and consequences of the Civil War and the culture of good people.”

Lee’s legacy also dates back to the first half of the 20th century. It is celebrated in bright books, remembered as a well-known name and remembered as a southern hero in displaying brass and stones in public. In 1975, members of the US Congress, including President Joe Biden, voted to restore Lee’s American citizenship later.

But in recent years, as Americans begin to reshape their relationship with more and more wrong men, Lee’s image has fallen apart.

“It’s hard to enforce a criminal law, but worshiping Lee seems inappropriate now,” Foner told Al Jazeera.

In Jacksonville, Florida, a state school board with several schools named after Confederate statues, voted to change its name last week. One school named Lee opened about 1926, changed its name to Riverside High School.

The decision came after five controversial school committee meetings that sparked a long-running debate. While many people speak out in defense of the name of the school, which also includes a Confederate official as his sporting mascot, research (PDF) found that 59 percent of the community’s affiliated students contribute to this change.

Virginia struggles with Lee’s legacy

As the account of Lee’s legacy spread to many lands, the controversy grew even stronger in Virginia, where he was born.

In Charlottesville, where white whites to shake in 2017, the city council voted Monday to remove a statue of Lee from a local park, and another statue of Confederate General Stonewall Jackson nearby. Members of the city council were first asked to remove the statues in 2016, which led to years of public debate, legal challenges and demonstrations of goodwill and removal.

“We hope to transform our urban parks by eliminating the old racist Charlottesville culture,” the council said.

In the city of Richmond, Virginia, formerly the capital of Confederacy, Lee’s 13-ton horse jumping statue has been like a lightning bolt for years, but his role as a symbol of controversy was raised in 2020 as protests erupted around the world over the assassination. George Floyd.

Virginia Attorney Ralph Northam last year singing by removing the statue, which is 18 meters (59 feet) below the ground covered with graffiti. The Supreme Court has heard the debate this week.

Washington and Lee University, a college in Lexington, Virginia, where Lee served as President, this week refused to call for the removal of Lee’s name from the school, but agreed to take action to change the institution. After months of debate and more than 15,000 comments submitted to the university board, the school finally came up with their own opinion.

“Although we have heard enough support to deliver on our promises to diversity, fairness and inclusion in the camp, we have not found an agreement to change the name of our university to the extent that we agree,” the university concluded.

The letter went on to apologize for “past Confederacy worship” and the exploitation of slaves. The university department, which has a portrait of Lee, will be transformed without its shape and the church that will be named after him will be called “University Chapel”. The school also volunteered to stop the annual “founders’ celebration, which takes place on Lee’s birthday.

After years of renovation, Lee’s old home in Arlington, Virginia, was reopened to the public in June, but with major changes to its old homes and translation signs. The building, located in Arlington National Cemetery and run by the National Park Service, received $ 12m which raises issues of black slaves who already live in the area.

Arlington House, Robert E Lee Memorial, formerly known as Custis-Lee Mansion, as seen in the garden, is open to the public for the first time since 2018 at Arlington National Cemetery, June 8, 2021, in Arlington, Virginia [Andrew Harnik/AP Photo]

The former bookstore has been relocated to a non-historic laboratory to use the site to explain the history of slaves on the farm.

“This was one of the main objectives of the project. Raising the issue of slaves and slave labor at Arlington House, “National Park Ranger Aaron LaRocca told Al Jazeera.” We strongly encourage these issues. We are taking them forward. “

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