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Undecided state and local officials should better rationalize their stance toward the Confederate soldier statue in front of Loudoun County’s courthouse. Ignorance is a weak justification for fence-sitting, especially for public servants (Loudoun Times-Mirror: “We asked 28 local officials about Leesburg’s Confederate statue. Here’s what they had to say.” Aug. 24, 2017).

Indecision is not inherently problematic, and honest discussion is key to resolving this divisive, nuanced, and complicated issue. But ignorance of the history and ideas surrounding the courthouse statue is hard to excuse and easily remedied. Public service, moreover, carries an implicit obligation to understand local issues, prominent controversies in particular.

Maybe an overdue visit to a local public library is in order. But that elected officials are undecided due to confessed ignorance is either doubtful or disheartening.

Zack Voell



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