J.D.R. Hawkins

One bullet can make a man a hero… or a casualty.

Such a Sad State of Affairs

It seems that nothing is sacred. Statues that were once renowned as cherished artifacts from the past aren’t even safe in cemeteries anymore. It makes me sick that people have no respect for the dead, or for others’ ancestors. Here’s one example.

Atlanta Council members passed a resolution a week ago Monday night declaring that the city should remove the Lion of the Confederacy statue, which has been vandalized, and place it in temporary storage.

The 127-year-old Lion of the Confederacy statue, built by T.M. Brady and dedicated on Confederate Memorial Day in 1894, was erected to honor the 3,000 unknown Confederate soldiers buried at the cemetery. The lion overlooks the graves. Oakland Cemetery is the final resting place of more than 70,000 residents, including famous Atlantans, mayors and governors, and is also home to a 65-foot Confederate obelisk, built in 1870.

Georgia law includes a statute that can make it difficult for local governments to remove a Confederate monument, because it is considered unlawful to damage, relocate or remove a monument dedicated to the United States or the Confederacy. However, the Georgia General Assembly adopted updates to the law last year that allows for “appropriate measures for the preservation, protection and interpretation of such [a] monument or memorial.”

Local governments throughout metro Atlanta have also simply started ignoring the law over the last two years.
Council approved a $33,000 contract with Superior Rigging and Erecting Co. to remove the lion statue. The City has not said where it will be located long-term, and did not say when the statue removal would take place.

(Article courtesy of the Dixie Heritage Newsletter, August 26, 2021 ed.)

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2 thoughts on “Such a Sad State of Affairs

  1. Frank McCarthy on said:

    Hate to see this type of defilement of our Heritage and legacy statues.
    It seems that misguided self called activists are ‘googling’ site searches all over the American landscape, possibly more in the South, in the search for objects of opportunity to defile with their disgusting politically motivated slogan’s.
    I’m sorry to say, when I lived in Atl, I had not visited this beautifully carved lion which it appears to have been worked into a solid slab of Carrara marble.
    I visited many of the heritage trail signage that are everywhere in Town, humbling to was to read the course of battle.

    The thing that enrages and sickens me is that these are Military Heritage Monuments to soldiers killed in combat. In an age where reason and understanding would rule this defacement would be unthinkable would be a sacrilege not to be rendered upon a war memorial.

    There needs to come a time and now where laws are placed in protection of our public and private artworks…..waiting but there is little movement.

    The magnificent Robert E Lee Equestrian statue has been waylaid by the Virginia State courts Governors office and Mayor Stoney/Councilmen.
    Laws were deformed and twisted to allow this Nationally registered Heritage Monument Work of art to be removed.
    As a sculptor I find issue with this wrong dogmatic argument for removal. (It is virtue signally on a political sphere). No questions or input from the public was sought nor asked. It is a sad fact that Richmond City’s “Monument way” is filled now with empty pits or plinths from the absence of it’s 4 other legacy statues.
    A question remains when will we start to prevent iconoclasts who are naïve ignorant and simply bewildered by false narratives. When will we enact legal protections for these that have muscle in penalties and or restauration.
    Thank you for this great informative site.

    • Thank you so much for your comment, Mr. McCarthy. I can’t agree more. It is my hope that, someday, these monuments will be put back in rightful their places, but sadly, the way things are right now, that seems highly unlikely.

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