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Virginia Military Institute to keep Confederate statues

The statue of Gen. Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson stands in front of the barracks on the Virginia Military Institute campus in Lexington, Va., Sunday, Sept. 3, 2017. The VMI Board said on Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2017, that they would keep its Confederate statues and consider adding more historical context in the wake of last month’s violent white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va. (Bob Brown/Richmond Times-Dispatch via AP)Virginia Military Institute announced on Tuesday that it would keep its Confederate statues but will consider adding more historical context after last months deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, according to a report.

The military school’s college board met on Tuesday, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, and decided the school would keep its statues, including that of Confederate Gen. Stonewall Jackson, a former faculty member of the VMI, and another to honor those VMI cadets who died fighting for the Confederacy at the Battle of New Market.

“We are a different school,” the school’s superintendent, retired Gen. J.H. Binford Peay III, said, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch. “And we build on the strengths of our traditions, the right traditions, the right statues, the right … ceremonies that we have to make our graduates stronger and better for a nation that needs to move to the future and advance in a right way. That’s my thinking ladies and gentlemen. And I don’t think I’m being politically correct.”

Following the violent rally in Charlottesville, Va., that cost one counter-protester her life, multiple institutes, as well as local governments, in Virginia have considered taking down Confederate statues.

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