American History - CBS46 News


American History

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Joyce Oscar

Former WSB TV

Joyce Oscar Joyce Oscar

The city of New Orleans is in the process of removing four Confederate monuments largely due to the discrimination and oppression such symbols represent. 

Some cities chose to move such monuments out of the town square or centers into less prominent places. While I’m not a supporter of the Confederacy, I am a supporter of knowing our history.

The removal of one of the monuments, The Liberty Place monument seems to make some sense. It is a 35-foot granite obelisk paying tribute to whites who tried to topple a biracial Reconstruction government put in place in New Orleans after the Civil War. 

However, I wonder if removing some of these monuments such as Confederate soldiers from our landscape, as distasteful as some may find them, will erase an important part of our nation’s history.  Many of our Founding Fathers owned slaves, there is no escaping that history.

To understand how we got to where we are today I believe we must be aware of both the good and bad. These statues are tangible symbols of the oppression many Americans faced in our country in the 1700-1800’s and the struggle continues today.

Former Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice recently stated she is a firm believer in keeping your history before you. “When you start wiping out your history, sanitizing your history to make you feel better, it’s a bad thing,” Rice said

Her thoughts on this issue seem to line up with author and political theorist, Edmund Burke. Burke said, “Those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it.”

In her comments, Rice stated how our Constitution originally counted her ancestors as 3/5ths of a man and recalled her father having trouble registering to vote in Birmingham in 1952. And in 2005, how she stood in the Benjamin Franklin Room, taking the oath of office to that same Constitution.

The oath, administered by a Jewish woman Supreme Court Justice.  Rice concluding, “That’s the story of America.”

I’m Joyce Oscar


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