Confederate memorial inscription in Lawrenceville

Gwinnett County Solicitor General Brian Whiteside’s office announced he is asking county commissioners to remove this Confederate memorial from the grounds of the Gwinnett Historic Courthouse on the Lawrenceville Square after it has been the target of several acts of vandalism.

Gwinnett County Solicitor General Brian Whiteside is asking the county commission to remove a controversial Confederate memorial from the Lawrenceville Square that the prosecutor said has been the target of vandals multiple times recently.

Whiteside’s request comes one week after Gwinnett County commission District 1 candidate Kirkland Carden and former 7th Congressional District candidate Nabilah Islam launched a petition calling for the monument’s removal. The memorial stands on the grounds of the Gwinnett County Historic Courthouse and was erected in 1993.

It is also located less than about 10 yards from the site of the lynching of Charlie Hale, an African American man, in 1911.

“In recent days, vandals have defaced the Confederate monument in Downtown Lawrenceville,” Whiteside’s office said in a statement. “Due to these recent events, the Gwinnett County Solicitor’s Office has respectfully urged the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners to order the removal of the Confederate monument due to safety concerns.”

Whiteside wants the memorial moved from its current site near the Pike Street entrance to the historic courthouse to the Gwinnett County History Museum. It was erected by the United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Sons of Confederate Veterans, and includes a tribute to Gwinnett residents who fought for the Confederate States of America in the Civil War as well as a quote from British Prime Minister Winston Churchill — who was not born until nearly a decade after the Civil War ended.

Confederate monuments, as well as statues of slave owners or people who advocated slavery, have been under fire in light of a series of deaths of African-Americans in recent months. those deaths have sparked a series of protests in Gwinnett County as well as other parts of Georgia and the rest of the United States.

State Rep. Shelly Hutchinson, D-Snellville, filed a bill earlier this month to bar the displaying of these monuments and statues on public property, but it failed to move out of the Georgia House of Representatives.

The argument that the Confederate monument on the Lawrenceville Square should be removed because it has become the target of vandalism is similar to grounds used to remove a Confederate monument in Decatur earlier this month. A judge declared the Decatur monument a public nuisance because of repeated acts of vandalism.

That appears to be the strategy Whiteside is taking, although he’s going through the Board of Commissioners at this point, instead of the courts.

“Safeguarding the safety and security of Gwinnett County residents and law enforcement officers and personnel is a priority for Solicitor General Whiteside,” the solicitor’s office said. “Moving the Confederate monument to the Gwinnett History Museum will potentially stop additional property damage and criminal activity from taking place within the community.”

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I'm a Crawford Long baby who grew up in Marietta and eventually wandered to the University of Southern Mississippi for college. Earned a BA in journalism (double minor in political science and history). Previously worked in Florida and Clayton County.

(10) comments

Tardismark40

This is a monument to slavery, racists, traitors and losers. It never should have been put up in the first place

guest41

So wrong on so many points. Ignorance is bliss.

getoverit

I say let's get HIM out.........NOW

Retirement2019

Brian whiteside is an appeaser of terrorist's and law breaker's. He's a disgrace to the office. Shame on those who voted for this disgrace.

MarvinGardens

I don't advocate vandalism, but it isn't terrorism.

guest41

On that monument, Winston Churchill makes a very prophetic statement. Maybe Brian and the ne'er-do-wells who defaced it should read it.

MarvinGardens

Churchill is right, we should not forget our heritage. Let's fix the other inscription so that we remember. "In memory of those who fought on both sides in the Rebellion against the United States; of the soldiers and civilians who suffered, and starved, and were terrorized, and died; of the innocent men, women and children who were enslaved, tortured and murdered in the slaveholding states before and during the Rebellion. Lest we forget. 1861-1865."

jimbo1185

perhaps mr. whiteside should bow out of this situation - his being a native of a northern state could be interpreted as a built-in bias to anything remotely related to the confederacy, the civil war or slavery.

Retirement2019

Whiteside has a major conflict of interest then.

MarvinGardens

I am a native Southerner, but being American I am biased against the Confederacy. Mr. Whiteside is being a good American.

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