State bill would protect Alabama’s historical monuments
MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Out of fear that history is being erased, State Sen. Gerald Allen (R-Tuscaloosa) plans to introduce the Alabama Memorial Preservation Act in the Senate when the legislative session begins on February 7. If passed, the act would prohibit the removal, renaming, or alteration of any statue, memorial, or monument over fifty years old located on public state, county, and city properties.
“I am concerned about politically-correct efforts to erase entire portions of American history, and oftentimes these efforts to remove a statue or a monument are done in haste and without public knowledge,” Allen said. “I believe our children and grandchildren should remember history as it happened – the good and the bad.”
Dozens of cities across the state contain their own Confederate monuments that were constructed post-reconstruction. Montgomery, for instance, has the Monument to Confederate Soldiers and Sailors on the grounds of the State Capitol. Partially funded with state grants, the monument has stood since 1886, and the person who laid the cornerstone was none other than CSA President Jefferson Davis.
Montgomery is also home to numerous civil rights movement monuments including the Civil Rights Memorial, located on Washington Avenue. The granite display contains the names of 41 people who died during the fight for civil rights.
“I have had numerous discussions with other legislators, historians, and interested citizens, and this version will reflect their input. I am very confident the Memorial Preservation Act will receive final passage this year,” Allen remarked. “My intent is to preserve memorials to all of Alabama’s history – including the Civil War, the World Wars, and the Civil Rights movement – for generations to come.”
Allen proposed a similar bill last year, but it failed to gain enough support in the Alabama House of Representatives before the session ended.