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Make It Right Project’s Jacksonville Billboard Calls for Removal of Confederate Monuments as City Hosts Take ’Em Down Everywhere Conference

The Billboard

The Make It Right Project erected a billboard in downtown Jacksonville, Florida, today calling for the removal of monuments to the Confederacy—specifically targeting the city’s “Monument to the Women of the Confederacy.” The billboard points out the shamefulness of Jacksonville’s Confederate statuary, which glorifies and honors a nation founded explicitly on the cornerstone of black chattel slavery.

“According to the inscription, the women honored by this monument ‘gave their all’ to the Confederate cause, which was the enslavement of black human beings in perpetuity,” said Kali Holloway, Director of the Make It Right Project. “It is an ethically bankrupt and morally indefensible cause, which this statue has nonetheless represented for more than a century. Today we loudly call for that misplaced reverence—of racist violence, supremacy and power—to end. Now.”

“The Confederacy: Wrong Side of Slavery. Wrong Side of History,” the signage reads. The billboard follows other MIR billboards demanding Confederate monument removal erected in Seattle, Washington; Raleigh, North Carolina; and Charlottesville, Virginia. Located along I-95 West, 300 feet north of Kings Road, the sign is up days before the “Take ’Em Down Everywhere” Global Conference.

Take ’Em Down Everywhere Global Conference — March 23, 2019

TakeEmDownJax hosts the Second Annual Take ’Em Down Everywhere Global Conference this Saturday, March 23. The convening brings together activists from around the country and world who are dedicated to dismantling white supremacy and reckoning with its ongoing legacy in every form, including its most visible manifestation—monuments glorifying systems of racist oppression and their defenders. Public events will be held downtown, including a rally at 3 p.m. in Confederate Park at 956 Hubbard Street, followed by a panel discussion that will include Make It Right Project Director Kali Holloway, to be held in the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Union Hall at 966 North Liberty Street at 5 p.m.

“We know these monuments were not erected right after the Civil War, but from the close of the 19th century through the second half of the 20th,” said Wells Todd of TakeEmDownJax. “Putting Confederate soldiers and racist, pro-slavery politicians on literal pedestals sent a threatening and intimidating message to the African-American community. These statues were tied to the legally mandated segregation and widespread disenfranchisement of African Americans, and they are inextricably connected to inequities that persist to this day.”

The list of confirmed speakers and panelists is as follows:

Mary Cobb of the Women’s March St. Johns, who will discuss the theft of a marker dedicated recently to an African-American man lynched in St. Johns County

Maya Little from Take Action Chapel Hill, who led the fight to remove the statue of Silent Sam from the UNC-Chapel Hill campus

Kali Holloway from the Make It Right Project, a campaign dedicated to taking down Confederate monuments and telling the truth about history

Michael Quess Moore of Take ’Em Down NOLA, who successfully led the effort to remove numerous New Orleans Confederate markers

Rev. Ron Rawls of St. Paul AME Church in Lincolnville, speaking on the struggle to take down the statues in St. Augustine

Ben Frazier of TakeEmDownJax, who will discuss the effort to remove two statues in Jacksonville

Rev. Phillip Baber on the launching of an initiative to change the name of Robert E. Lee High School in Jacksonville

Holli Rumsey of TakeEmDownJax, who will break down myths surrounding these symbols of the Confederacy

JoAnna Brown, a spoken word poet

Kara Lane, a student leader at Robert E. Lee High School

 

The Make It Right Project

The Make It Right Project is dedicated to working with multiple groups—activists, artists, historians and media outlets—to take down Confederate monuments and tell the truth about history.