Virginia City will Sell Confederate General Robert E. Lee Statue and rename Lee Park

Charlottesville City Council votes to sell Robert E. Lee statue. Despite a pending court case that will ultimately determine the general’s fate, the City Council voted to sell the city’s statue of Confederate General with selling the statue through a process called “request for bid.” That means it will ask for bids from different educational institutions, museums or non-profits and then pick where it goes.

According to the resolution Councilor Kristin Szakos put forward Monday, the buyer would be responsible for removing and transporting the statue. After the council voted 3-2 in February to remove the statue, city staff devised options for how the city might move the statue. The staff advised that the city can sell, auction off or donate the statue. The decision to sell the statue contradicts a recommendation from a community panel that the council created last year to identify solutions to resolve the controversy surrounding the statue.

The vote split exactly along the lines from the original vote to move the statue, with Fenwick, Kristen Szakos, and Wes Bellamy voting yes, and Mike Signer and Kathy Galvin dissenting.

“My hope was that a honest, robust, deep discussion of minority rights would bring us closer to that elusive goal of all men and women are created equal,” Fenwick said.

“That opinion is still where I am on this that to add rather than to subtract is where I, is the votes that I would make but I entirely respect my colleagues and the passion they brought to this,” Signer said.

It also voted unanimously to rename Lee Park. The City Council will consider the new park names at its June 5 meeting.

In Meantime People in the valley react to removal of Robert E. Lee statue in Charlottesville.A Member of local Sons of Confederate Veterans Commander speaking for WHSV TV3 says things like the statue and the Confederate battle flag do not stand for slavery, and insists the Civil War was not started because of slavery. He says because of the common misconceptions, some people take offense with Confederate history.

“I’m sickened, I’m devastated, I’m very angry about it,” Philip Way, Commander of Sons of Confederate Veterans in Harrisonburg, said. “I, being a Christian, am trying not to let my heart get eaten away by these things, but our nation, our history and our heritage is being sucked out.” He added that he’d like to see the statue stay where it is, but if not, he would want his organization to purchase it.