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Charlottesville historic monument controversy facts for kids

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The Charlottesville historic monument controversy is the public discussion on how the Charlottesville should respond to protesters who complain that various local monuments are racist. The controversy began before 2016 when protest groups in the community asked the city council for the local removal of Confederate monuments and memorials. Other monuments became part of the controversy, including those of Thomas Jefferson because of his ownership of slaves and those of Lewis and Clark for their advocacy of white colonists over Native Americans.

In 2016, the Charlottesville city council responded by voting to make changes including the removal of some statues and changing the names of some parks. Counterprotesters then filed a lawsuit to keep the statues.



Establishment of Blue Ribbon Commission

Renaming of parks

See also: Market Street Park and Court Square Park

On 4 June 2017, attorneys representing the decedents of Confederate soldiers opposed the renaming of the parks.

In June 2017, the city council voted to rename the parks. Jackson Park became "Justice Park," and Lee Park became "Emancipation Park."

In July 2018, the city council voted again 4-1 to rename the parks. Emancipation Park became "Market Street Park," and Justice Park became "Court Square Park." City council members voting to change the names said that the idealistic names did not fit if the Confederate statues remained in the park. Also, they reported to have survey results in favor of the new names. The city council member in opposition said that renaming the parks would lead the community to avoid necessary conversation.

Payne v. City of Charlottesville

Payne v. City of Charlottesville was the lawsuit filed by advocates for preservation of the monuments. The lawsuit paused removal of the statues and argued against various alterations.

Unite the Right rally

The Unite the Right rally was an event on August 11–12, 2017 in Charlottesville organized in protest of attempts to remove monuments in Charlottesville. The event drew international media attention and included violence that included a death.

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