…by the 20th century, heritage legislation existed in most European cities and began to appear in North America, beginning in Charleston, S.C.
What glory was intended to be preserved…
Robert Behr, The Post and Courier (Charleston, South Carolina), August 15, 2017
Activists across Charleston called on South Carolina lawmakers Tuesday to repeal or amend the state’s Heritage Act to empower cities, counties and universities to remove Confederate monuments and memorials…
The Heritage Act was part of a compromise that removed the Confederate battle flag from the Statehouse dome in 2000, and it forbids any other public removal of other flags or memorials from the Confederacy without a two-thirds vote of the Legislature.
That’s happened only once: After white supremacist Dylann Roof killed nine worshippers at Charleston’s Emanuel AME Church, lawmakers voted to remove the flag from a monument on the Statehouse grounds…
The National Action Network called for removal of the Calhoun monument. Calhoun died before the Civil War, but his writings helped underpin secessionist voices and the later emergence of the Confederacy
Dot Scott of the Charleston NAACP branch cited the statue in her remarks.
“Separating Confederate heritage from racial hatred today is like trying to separate grits from the water they were cooked in,” she said. “It’s impossible.”
From Michael Putzel, Rewriting History or Acknowledging It?, Huffington Post, August 3, 2016:
Daron-Lee Calhoun II of the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture explained why he would be happy to see the removal of a statue of one of the white South’s most venerable 19th-century leaders. John C. Calhoun, who served as vice president of the United States under two presidents, was among the principal defenders of the institution of slavery, owned slaves himself and argued in both the House and Senate for recognition of a state’s right to reject federal laws with which it didn’t agree. As a descendant of Calhoun slaves who were given the surname of their owner upon emancipation, Daron-Lee Calhoun sees an altogether different figure when he looks up at the imposing sculpture of the famed orator looking down from a pedestal high above Marion Square in Charleston.
…”There has not been one statue I despise more in my life. Everything that he believed in, everything that he stood for goes back to slavery.”