Virginia’s capital city made prime-time news this weekend during an episode of CBS’ 60 minutes about Confederate monuments.
In the episode, Anderson Cooper calls Richmond “ground zero” of the debate on Confederate Monuments. Cooper spoke to Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney, and according to the episode Stoney says he’s for taking the monuments down.
“It is, for me, the greatest example of Nostalgia masquerading as history,” Stoney says. When Cooper asks if the monuments represent real history the Mayor responds, “It’s the fake news of their time.”
Also featured in the episode is University of Richmond professor Julian Hayter. Hayter serves on Richmond’s Monument Avenue Commission. As a historian, he told Cooper, he thinks the statues should stay. Just not as they are.
“I think we lack imagination when we talk about memorials. It’s all or nothing. It’s leave them this way, it’s tear them down. As if there’s nothing in between that we could do to tell a more enriching story about American history,” says Hayter.
Richmond’s Monument Avenue Commission is currently seeking input on how to deal with the city’s monuments. Community groups can request a meeting with commission members.