The debate over whether Confederate statues should remain where they are throughout the United States have taken a backseat to whether or not President Donald Trump’s response the violence in Charlottesville was strong enough. However, the conversation is shifting.
According to a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll, 60 percent of millennials (18-29 years old) believe that Trump’s response was not strong enough to the Charlottesville violence.
Despite their views of President Trump, a supermajority (60 percent) of millennials believe that statues honoring leaders of the Confederacy should remain as a historical symbol. Almost a third (30 percent) believe that they should be removed because they are offensive to some people. 11 percent were unsure.
What the poll left out was whether those surveyed believe the statues that pay tribute to leaders of the Confederacy should be moved versus whether they should be destroyed. For those who want to preserve history while also not honoring Confederate leaders, moving the statues to a different location (i.e. cemeteries, museums, etc.) is a viable option that some haven’t considered.
Earlier this week, the city of Baltimore, Maryland quietly removed the statues of four Confederate leaders overnight to avoid the potential for conflict. Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh has refused to disclose the location of the statues in order to avoid further violence.
Meanwhile, in Durham, North Carolina, four people were arrested for taking part in tearing down a Confederate statue in front of the old Durham County Courthouse.