Dallas city leaders expected to vote soon on Confederate monument's future
The Dallas City Council appears ready to demolish the Confederate monument in Pioneer Park Cemetery.
The resolution to get rid of the monument is on the council's April 25 meeting agenda. The resolution does not call for any plans to preserve the monument built in 1896.
It goes against an earlier staff recommendation to leave the statute where it is while adding historical context.
The monument stands six stories high and is just steps from the city's convention center. Based on what city council members said, it looks like the eight votes needed to demolish it are easily there.
The Confederate monument in Pioneer Park has stood for 122 years. But it now appears the Dallas City Council will vote to tear it down.
“Inscriptions make it clear it is a monument to white supremacy,” said Dallas City Councilmember Philip Kingston.
Just last month, city staff recommended leaving the monument where it is but adding historical context.
Mayor Mike Rawlings agreed with the recommendation.
"I suggest everyone go over to the statue and see it and read it. When I did it six months ago, I was chilled. It's scary to look at that statue and read the words on there,” Rawlings said. “We need to show the worst part of Dallas. I want every child who goes to school in Dallas to get that chilling and scary thought. How could people be like this?”
The push to remove the monument started in 2017 after the deadly riots in Charlottesville, Virginia, leading to tense protests in Dallas. Soon after, the city removed the Robert E. Lee statue and renamed the park where it stood.
But the discussion about removing the Confederate monument has taken longer. An ultra-conservative national group is targeting two of the city council members who have indicated they support removal.
The city disputes that it will cost millions to tear down the monument. The resolution on the April 25 agenda caps spending at $400,000.