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VOL. 132 | NO. 167 | Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The Latest: University Barricades Confederate Statue


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The Latest on efforts to remove Confederate monuments and the nationwide fallout from a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia (all times local):


2:30 p.m.

Workers in a Florida city have started taking down a memorial to Confederate soldiers at a city-owned cemetery.

The Palm Beach Post reports that a crane arrived at Woodlawn Cemetery in West Palm Beach on Tuesday to remove the 10-foot-tall (3-meter-tall) marble monument. Mayor Jeri Muoio announced the removal a day earlier, saying the city had asked the Daughters of the Confederacy to remove the memorial for months and that the group had declined. The group erected the monument in 1941.

The monument is carved with a Confederate flag, as well as words honoring soldiers. It was vandalized over the weekend with red spray paint. Police have said the monument also was vandalized a few weeks ago.


Information from: The Palm Beach (Fla.) Post, http://www.pbpost.com


1:30 p.m.

North Carolina's flagship university has put metal barriers around a Confederate statue ahead of an expected rally on campus.

Law enforcement officers were seen putting up the waist-high metal barriers Tuesday morning around the bronze soldier known as "Silent Sam" at the University of North Carolina.

Flyers have circulated on social media and around Chapel Hill for an evening rally by people who want the statue taken down. Chancellor Carol Folt issued a message urging students not to attend the rally and saying it's being organized by groups not associated with the university.

In nearby Durham, protesters tore down a bronze Confederate statue in front of a government building last week. Days later, Duke University chose to remove a limestone statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee from its chapel.


1:30 p.m.

Historians in Mississippi say the Confederate battle emblem is a "symbol of racial terror" that needs to be stripped from the state flag.

Thirty-four professors released a statement this week saying they expect questions from students about the recent white nationalist march in Charlottesville, Virginia, where some participants carried the rebel flag.

Mississippi has the last state flag with the Confederate symbol.

The professors from public and private universities say Mississippi legislators adopted the flag in 1894 to assert white supremacy. They say it "ignores the reality of the African-American experience, and it limits the scope of what Mississippi has been, is, and can be."

Voters kept the flag in a 2001 referendum. Republican Gov. Phil Bryant has said if the design is reconsidered, it should happen in another statewide election.


1:30 p.m.

George and Amal Clooney are donating $1 million to fight hate groups.

The couple announced Tuesday that their Clooney Foundation for Justice is supporting the Alabama-based Southern Poverty Law Center with a $1 million grant to combat hate groups in the United States.

George Clooney says in a statement Tuesday that they wanted to add their voices and financial assistance to the fight for equality.

The Southern Poverty Law Center monitors the activities of more than 1,600 extremist groups in the U.S. and has used litigation to win judgments against white supremacist organizations.

Last month, the Clooney Foundation announced a $2 million grant to support education for Syrian refugee children.


1:30 p.m.

Critics want New York City to remove a statue in Central Park that honors a doctor who used slaves in developing a pioneering approach to treating physical problems women can develop after childbirth.

City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito is among those calling for the removal of the statue of Dr. J. Marion Sims.

Sims was a 19th century physician who used slave women to develop his surgical technique to repair fistulas and operated on these women without anesthesia.

The removal of Confederate statues sparked a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, earlier this month. An anti-racist demonstrator was killed when a car drove into a crowd protesting the rally.

Following that violence, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said officials would review "symbols of hate" on city property.


1:30 p.m.

An official in a Massachusetts town has publicly apologized after posting a racist slur on Facebook after the deadly violence at a white nationalist rally in Virginia.

The Telegram & Gazette reports that Dudley Highway Superintendent Daniel Gion apologized at a selectmen's meeting Monday for what he called his "insensitive comment." He says his emotions got the better of him during a Facebook discussion last week about a CNN debate broadcast discussing the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia. The comment was apparently in reference to CNN commentator Symone Sanders, who is black. Gion is white.

Gion was placed on paid leave last week. He says he hopes to move on and learn from his mistake.


Information from: Telegram & Gazette (Worcester, Mass.), http://www.telegram.com


1:30 p.m.

The Confederate flags had been in a Manhattan apartment window for more than a year. And then, in a matter of days last week, they were met with hurled rocks, a punched-out window, a tarp hung over them and legal action.

By Monday, the lighted flags were no more to be found in the seventh-floor windows in the East Village neighborhood.

They'd attracted new attention after an Aug. 12 white nationalist rally to preserve a Confederate statue in Charlottesville, Virginia, spiraled into violence.

The tenant has noted the banners were up for more than a year. He calls it "a little suspicious" that the response has come only recently.

His landlord withdrew a lawsuit Monday asking a court to order the tenant to remove the flags.


8 a.m.

A Confederate memorial has been removed from outside a Maryland courthouse.

Photos posted on Howard County Executive Allan H. Kittleman's Facebook page show the memorial outside the Circuit Court in Ellicott City being removed Monday night and placed onto a truck. The monument includes the names of dozens of Confederate soldiers from the area.

Kittleman said the "more appropriate place for the memorial is in a museum."

Criticism of Confederate monuments has been intensifying since a rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, turned violent after white nationalists opposed to the city's plan to remove a statue of Gen. Robert E. Lee clashed with counter protesters.

The removal of the memorial in Ellicott City comes about a week after Baltimore pulled down its Confederate monuments under the cover of night.


7:30 a.m.

Charlottesville, Virginia, is planning to cover the statues of Confederate Gens. Robert E. Lee and Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson in black fabric.

The Daily Progress reports the city council voted unanimously early Tuesday to shroud the statues in fabric to represent the city's mourning of Heather Heyer. The 32-year-old woman was killed on Aug. 12 when a car rammed into a group of people protesting a white nationalist rally in the city.

The rally was sparked by the city's decision to remove a statue of Lee.

Tuesday's vote came after anger boiled over at the first city council meeting since the rally. Some residents screamed and cursed at councilors and called for their resignations.

A police spokeswoman said three people were arrested and released on summons for disorderly conduct.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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