Last night, the Dallas City Council voted 4-11 to take down the Confederate War Memorial in Pioneer Park. Dallas anti-racist activists deserve tremendous credit for making this vote happen. For years now, they’ve been unstinting in their calls for the monument’s removal—employing methods of protest from the traditional to the wildly creative. Thank you for all your hard work and tireless effort.
This isn’t the end, of course. The Dallas Landmark Commission will now take up the issue, and that decision may be “appealed to the Dallas Plan Commission since the monument and the location in the Pioneer Cemetery are both historic,” according to a local NBC affiliate. “The issue would then once again return to the City Council for a final decision, but Wednesday’s vote is a very strong indication of what that final decision will be.”
The monument, which has stood since 1896, features a Confederate soldier atop a lofty 60-foot pedestal and ringed by statues of Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, Albert Johnston, and Jefferson Davis. Erected by the Dallas chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, it’s located in downtown Dallas, just across the street from City Hall. The statue is one of the Make It Right Project’s 10 Most Unwanted statues.
Congratulations, again, to Dallas’s activists, whose sustained outcry over the last three years has led to the removal in September 2017 of the statue of Robert E. Lee at Lee Park, the renaming of the park to Oak Lawn Park, and the 2018 changing of multiple school names that formerly honored Confederates.