In the quiet of the nighttime, all four of Baltimore’s Confederate statues were removed. It happened just days after a white nationalist rally erupted into chaotic violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.
The Baltimore City Council voted Monday night unanimously to immediately take down the monuments after they experienced more than a year of trouble making a decision. Crews from the city began the process of removing the statues at 11:30 pm Tuesday and finished by 5:30 am Wednesday, according to The Baltimore Sun.
Hours before this removal process, President Donald Trump defended the white nationalist demonstrators who gathered in Virginia this weekend. They were there to protest the removal of a Confederate statue.
The mayor of Baltimore, Catherine Pugh, reported that the city moved “as quickly as we could” to get rid of the monuments.
“It’s done,” Pugh said to the Sun. “They needed to come down. My concern is for the safety and security of our people.”
There were more than 1,000 who marched in Baltimore’s streets on Sunday to demand that the city remove the Confederate statues. This was part of a national response to the deadly violence in Charlottesville.
Even though the Baltimore statues were removed in the night, there were people there cheering the police and the city workers who were removing the monuments. Applause and joyful shouts can be heard on a video that shows a crane loading a statue honoring Confederate General Robert E. Lee onto a flatbed truck.
“The police are being cheerful and encouraging people to take photos and selfies,” Baynard Woods, the editor at large of The Baltimore City Paper, told The NY Times as he documented the statues’ removal.
Where the monument to both Lee and Jackson stood, there now stands a statue of a pregnant black woman carrying a child on her back and raising her fist in the air. Activists placed the figure there during protests on Sunday.
It is not certain where the removed statues will be placed permanently. Mayor Pugh has suggested that they might be located in a Confederate cemetery.
Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) applauded the city for taking down the monuments. Other cities across the country are now reportedly considering removing their Confederate statues following Saturday’s deadly attack in Charlottesville. These cities include Memphis, Tennessee; Lexington, Kentucky; Jacksonville, Florida; and Washington, D.C.
Credit: Huffington Post