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Pro-Confederate monument group delays Leesburg rally

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A group defending the Confederate soldier monument's placement on the Loudoun County Courthouse grounds in Leesburg has pushed back its rally, originally planned for this Saturday, to Sept. 16, according to a Facebook announcement.

“There were some 'white nationalist' that were planning on attending and since we are not racist or nationalist we pushed it back to figure out how to deal with that,” said one of the rally's organizers, John Crump, in an email. “We didn't want to [get] co-opted [by] those guys.”

A Facebook post about the event reads: “III% United Patriots, The Three Percenters, and The Revolution are responding to calls to have the Confederate Statue in front of the Loudoun County Court in Leesburg removed. We believe this is a mistake and tantamount to trying to sanitize history. History is not PC. History can also be murky. We are not arguing the points of the Civil War, but we are arguing history should not be removed. Oppressive regimes have always tried to remove symbols of history to control the thinking of the people. We don't have to look any further than ISIS and the Taliban. We will not let it happen in Leesburg! We are not New Orleans and we are not Charlottesville. We will fight to protect history.”

The Loudoun NAACP plans to hold a counter rally to the “United Patriots'” efforts.

“I guess someone told them that there are two African-American-related events that day – The Ashburn Colored School Dedication and the Emancipation Celebration,” said Loudoun NAACP President Phillip Thompson in an email. “I guess they believe we can't walk and chew gum at the same time. We will be there …”

Feelings across the county are largely divided on the monument.

Loudoun County Chairwoman Phyllis Randall (D-At Large), the first African-American woman to serve as county chair, said she believes there is a more appropriate place for the statue than the courthouse grounds.

Leesburg Mayor Kelly Burk, when asked, did not directly answer whether she believes the monument should be moved.

The Leesburg statue, featuring a roughly 10-foot-tall, mounted Confederate soldier holding a gun, has been the topic of debate in recent years, with local residents and activists questioning its appropriateness in modern-day Loudoun County.

A Confederate statue in Rockville, Maryland, similar to the one in Leesburg was relocated from the courthouse grounds there to a more private location last month.

According to Town of Leesburg officials, the “United Patriots” rally is expected to include 50 participants or less, and the Loudoun County Sheriff's Office will provide law enforcement at the event.

Two summers ago, the Loudoun County NAACP and other groups held a rally on the courthouse grounds, where they called for a new monument remembering Loudoun County's slaves and local residents who fought on the side of the Union. This, they said, will help display a more accurate picture of Loudoun's history.

The 2015 rally was met with opposition by a small group of Confederate statue supporters who waved Confederate Battle Flags in front of the statue and in the center of the county seat.

The effort to “balance the history” from the local NAACP has stalled, however, with no one able to give a clear answer on where the plans stand.

Some activists have called for Loudoun's Confederate monument to be removed altogether, although state law says monuments honoring veterans cannot be removed.

The Confederate statue in Leesburg was erected in 1908 -- some say in memorial of Jefferson Davis and the “Lost Cause” -- and has remained standing for the past 107 years.

According to Loudoun.gov, the monument “serves as a memorial to the many Rebel soldiers who died fighting for the cause in which they believed." Commissioned by daughters of Confederate soldiers, the monument was constructed by renowned sculptor F.S. Sievers early in his career in 1908.

More than 60 African-Americans were lynched across the U.S. in 1908, according to the Library of Congress.

Comments


The group you saw in C-ville was the Light Foot Militia out of PA.  The only thing they have in common with 3UPVA in the III%.  III% United Patriots Of Virginia were not there in any fashion. 

III% Just references adherence to the constitution.  It is used by many groups. The Light Foot Militia is a Militia.  We are not. Some of our members do not even own guns. 

Just so you know there were no 3% groups from VA in C-Ville.  The ones that did go were under the misguided assumption that they were going to keep the peace.  We disagreed with that stance since two groups (The Nazis and Antifa) were coming to fight.  We knew it was never about anything else. 

We choose to stay away.


Given what happened in Durham, NC, last night state law is not going to protect this historic statue from vandalism. Hope our Town Mayor and County Supervisors are paying attention and being proactive to protect our history, good and bad, and town. We don’t want to be another Charlottesville. Move the statue or erect another memorial to ALL who suffered during the Civil War.


I was in Charlottsville on Saturday. There were men with 3% patches (Crump’s group) on their shoulders actively involved in the the fighting. Do not believe the lies and garbage that Crump is spewing. This 3% group are a bunch of white supremist who stood shoulder to shoulder with the KKK and alt right on Saturday. Do not allow this group to establish a footprint in our community. David Duke said they would be back in Virginia and that they were not finished yet. If this event actually takes place we must take a stand and outnumber them 10 to 1. Stand up and speak up. Mayor Burke, pick a side and do the right thing.


These clowns, I wouldn’t even give them the time of day to go out there and counter protest. I wish people just leave these caveman alone rather than showing up and acknowledging their beliefs, that’s what they want? It would be funny to me if the only traffic they got were people on foot vs. carloads of people showing up to counter protest. If that happened, they would get a few people walking by on their way to get a hot dog, lunch or a doughnut who wouldn’t even care.


So, Mayor Kelly Burk shows rare courage - by running away and hiding, and refusing to answer a simple, straight forward question.  That’s real leadership, right?


We are also pushing for a statue to the suffering of African Americans during, after, and before the civil war
John Crump


Somebody should ask John Crump why a rally is needed in the first place? The Confederate soldier monument isn’t going anywhere and is protected by state law.

All a rally does is bring out opposing forces to clash with one another. Typically the extremist on both ends, which is never a good mix. Until there is bill to remove this monument in Richmond and it appears to have a 50/50 chance of passing, there is no need to hold any type of a rally in Leesburg.

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