Here’s the thing: If white people insist on campaigning to preserve their beloved
white supremacy arts and crafts projects monuments honoring the American tradition of keeping negroes in chains the Confederacy, the least they could do is keep their slavery memorabilia-loving asses out of largely Black neighborhoods and counties that simply don’t want the monuments there.
But since whiteness doesn’t care about anything but its own feelings (see the right-wing-manufactured controversy over Critical Race Theory), the Georgia division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans has filed a new lawsuit demanding the restoration of the Lost Cause monument which was removed from Decatur Square in downtown Decatur, Ga., last year.
From the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
The nine-page suit filed last week in DeKalb County Superior Court asks that the 30-foot Confederate obelisk, plucked from its perch last June, be returned to its “former place of honor.”
It names Decatur city attorney Bryan Downs and all seven DeKalb County commissioners — including two who weren’t in office when the obelisk was removed — as defendants, suggesting that officials took “collusive action” to circumvent state law protecting Confederate monuments.
Martin O’Toole, a spokesman for the Georgia Sons of Confederate Veterans, wrote in a Sunday afternoon Facebook post that putting the monument back up would “send a message around the state and nation vindicating our laws.”
“Decatur and DeKalb [County’s] actions have been cited in several venues as an example of a legitimate means by the ‘Cancel Culture’ to censor history,” wrote O’Toole, who is also a leader with the Charles Martel Society, an Atlanta-based white nationalist organization.
“This lawsuit should expose the falsity of these claims.”
For the record: I live in DeKalb County, and as a resident, I can confirm that O’Toole (emphasis on “Tool”) doesn’t know what the fuck he’s talking about. First of all, you gotta love the way conservatives keep tacking the words “cancel culture” onto every issue that involves the removal of shit they happen to like (racism, statues commemorating racism, raisins in potato salad, etc). Never mind the fact that Black people have been talking about getting rid of Confederate monuments since long before the concept of “canceling” was even a thing.
Secondly, this is DeKalb County we’re talking about here. It’s a predominantly Black county in metro Atlanta—the same metro Atlanta that is largely responsible for turning Georgia blue and electing Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff to the U.S. Senate. Suffice it to say, it isn’t likely that the vast majority of people living here want to see anyone’s 30-foot-long white supremacy erection standing all out in the open—it’s obscene.
According to AJC, the monument was erected in 1908 outside what’s now known as the Historic DeKalb Courthouse by the United Daughters of the Confederacy—which I’ve always imagined was formed due to the Ku Klux Klan having a “we don’t love them bed wenches” policy against recruiting women (although, apparently, white women just started their own KKK).
DeKalb County officials had been trying for years to get the monument removed, but Georgia laws protecting the odes to white supremacy prevented that from happening, so, in 2019, officials opted to install a marker that called the monument exactly what is—an attempt by racists to promote “white supremacy and faulty history.”
Eventually, more had to be done because people in the area kept vandalizing the monument, because, again, NOBODY IN DECATUR WANTS TO SEE THAT HUGE WHITE SUPREMACY BONER BUST!
More from AJC:
By June of 2020, Downs, the Decatur city attorney, had filed a lawsuit asking that DeKalb County — which owns the monument — be ordered to take it down. The petition did not directly challenge state law protecting Confederate tributes but called the obelisk a “public nuisance” and a threat to public safety.
Within a few days, and without DeKalb County filing a formal response, Superior Court Judge Clarence Seeliger issued an order agreeing with the city’s stance. He gave the county about two weeks to remove the monument and put it in storage.
In September, Seeliger issued a final order declaring that the obelisk “should not at any time” be returned to the square.
So, the monument went down, and, according to Downs, it isn’t going back up no matter how much a bunch of whiny Klan-humpers wants it to.
Downs told AJC via email that the lawsuit is nothing more than a “tardy, vexatious attack on properly entered rulings by a Georgia court of law,” and that “the petition they have now filed is factually incorrect, legally flawed, and procedurally deficient.”
He also said that much like the historical event that the monument commemorated, their push to have it restored is “a lost cause.”