Community divided over removal of Confederate monument at U of L - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Community divided over removal of Confederate monument at U of L

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – Is it a symbol of history or one of hate? That was the question Saturday behind a rally centered around the removal of a Confederate monument at the University of Louisville.

Standing at about 70 feet tall, the Confederate monument towers over the U of L campus.

“I'm against them trying to remove historical artifacts and monuments,” said Richard Manion.

With flags and signs that said "Save our Heritage," supporters of the statue argued it needs to stay as a symbol of American history.

“To know what we did in the past so we don't make a mistake and do it again,” Manion said.

More support came in the form of honoring veterans who were killed in war as well as the statue's artistic value.

“It's far beyond just a Confederate statue. It has much more meaning than a north, south thing and I think that’s what it’s been turned into,” said Elaine Taylor.

Different groups of people came and went throughout the day to support their respected cause. Some in favor of the monument being removed say the opposition is uninformed.

“When we asked the question why are you here, peacefully, no one can answer why,” Deanna Benson said.  

That turned anger into frustration.

“As a student here, it makes me uncomfortable knowing that people are out here holding a Confederate flag saying that they're defending this statue here,” Benson said.

Last month a judge ruled the statue can legally be moved.

What started out as a quiet show of support for keeping the monument in its place, ended with shouts from both sides of the issue. And not one step closer to moving forward united -- instead becoming divided by the past.

“I wouldn't say I see a compromise because at the end of the day no one is going to be 100 percent happy. I do see that America is making a turn for the worst,” Benson said.

“Why all the sudden in 2016, we have an issue here?  We have an issue that we don't need to have an issue over. Why move?” Taylor asked.

There is no timeline yet on when the statue will be removed or where its new location will be.

Copyright 2016 WDRB News. All rights reserved.

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