By Treva Harper
First I want to say that I completely condemn racism and slavery in all its forms. There is no place for either in a civilized society.
As for the Confederate statue, I believe that it should be voted on by the people and not decided upon by the City Council. It is such a divisive issue that a vote should be held to resolve the issue.
Should a public vote result in the statue being taken down, I would like to see it in a Museum where there can be signs and other material explaining the history of the statue, slavery, racism and the Civil War. There should also be an explanation of the reasons for its removal from public display.
Should a vote result in the statue remaining where it is I would be willing to post a sign near it explaining the opposing view and the results of the vote that left it standing. Additionally, if it does remain I would encourage those concerned over it, regardless of point of view, to go to it with their families and discuss why they feel the way they do, what the civil war was about and their personal feelings about slavery, racism and the Civil War. Then the family should go to the library and find some books of educational value on subjects such as slavery, the Civil War, or even just of how to make a statue or whatever their family is interested in that is related to the topic. Make it an educational experience.
After this, each family should Google “modern-day slavery” and learn about the slavery that still is going on in our world. Slavery in our history is horrible, but we are fighting over the past when there are currently slaves being abused in our world today. It is simply not based only on race, in most cases, anymore. Right here in Amarillo, we have slaves who are owned and marketed by the pimps in our city. So, the next time you see a prostitute being abused by her pimp perhaps you will feel the same outrage against the pimp that you have against that statue.
Again, I want to make it clear that I oppose slavery and racism in the strongest terms possible. They are both despicable and should never be tolerated.
I want to give a shout out to Rusty Tomlinson. We may not agree on how to handle this issue but I want to say that I admire your determination and dedication to the issue. I wish everyone in Amarillo was as engaged as you are!