And just like that, all four of Baltimore’s confederate statues were taken down overnight, following a unanimous Monday evening vote by the Baltimore City Council for immediate removal.
The decision comes days after the white supremacist rally that took place in Charlottesville, Va., leaving one dead and multiple others injured. According to The Baltimore Sun, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh said the city moved “as quickly as we could.”
“They needed to come down,” she stated. “My concern is for the safety and security of our people.”
On Sunday, over 1,000 people made their way down the streets of Baltimore urging the city do away with its Confederate statues follow Saturday’s fatal event. Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) commended Baltimore in its decision, saying, “This isn’t a question of erasing history—it’s part of learning from history.”
Baltimore isn’t alone. As HuffPost notes, Memphis, Tenn.; Lexington, Ky.; Jacksonville, Fla.; and Washington, D.C. are among other cities removing Confederate monuments. On Tuesday, The Hollywood Forever Cemetery, one of Los Angeles’ oldest cemeteries, announced plans to remove a Confederate monument from its grounds, though cemetery president and co-owner Tyler Cassity feels removing the monument was an act of “erasing history”.
“We feel they have a right to commemorate their dead,” Cassity told The Los Angeles Times, “but Confederate flags and guns can be disturbing to our visitors.”
Some have taken matters into their own hands, most notably in the removal of a Confederate monument just outside the Durham County courthouse in North Carolina on Monday night. Durham County Sheriff Michael D. Andrews told WNCN deputies are working to identify the protesters involved. “No one is getting away with this,” Andrews said on Tuesday. “We can all agree yesterday went too far.”
Takiyah Fatima Thompson was reportedly among the first to be arrested in connection with Monday night’s events. All protestors will face felony charges, according to Andrews.
“What we did was not only right, but it was just,” Thompson told CBS North Carolina. “I did the right thing. Everyone who was there, the people did the right thing.”