In a move that many long-time city hall watchers are saying is unprecedented, the Fayetteville City Council May 3 voted to rescind a proclamation honoring Confederate History Month.
Above, a small crowd gathered May 3 to see the City Council rescind a proclamation honoring Confederate heritage. Photo/Ben Nelms.
In late April, the city issued the proclamation to little fanfare. But the subsequent demonstration at the Fayette County Commission and other issues, forced the city to re-think its position.
Mayor Ed Johnson said the proclamation had caused “distress” in the city and said it was contrary to the city’s stance in trying to accomodate people. The formal reversal passed the City Council unanimously, and there were only a few speakers at the end of the meeting who discussed the issue.
Former Planning Commission member Derryl Anderson thanked the mayor and said she could recall when the Ku Klux Klan rallied outside her house on Church Street many years ago.
Scott Gilbert, who heads the state Sons of Confederate Veterans, and lived in Fayette for many years, pointed out that Robert E. Lee’s birthday and a holiday celebrating the state’s Confederate heritage are still state holidays.
“We’re disappointed. We have literally given thousands of hours of volunteers to the community,” he said.