Yeah, Let’s Grind Those Confederate Statues to Dust

Silent Sam is finally silent forever.Left: SGM/ZUMAPRESS; Right: Julia Wall/Raleigh News & Observer/TNS via ZUMA

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

Students are coming back to school, and at some schools this means grappling once again with all those statues of Confederate generals:

Tim Huebner, a history professor at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tenn., who has studied the legacy of Confederate memorials, recommends contextualizing Confederate markers with signs or new courses rather than removing them. “I don’t think you take all of these remnants of the past, take all these artifacts, and grind them into dust,” he said.

Allow me to politely disagree. I think that grinding them into dust is precisely what ought to be done. In fact, I’m surprised that kids at these universities haven’t torn down and pulverized a whole lot more of these statues than they have. It shouldn’t take much. Fill some frat boys with plenty of Bud Light and mint juleps, get ’em to drive a couple of F-350s out to the quad (or whatever) with plenty of rope, and then hit the accelerator. When the statue is down, everyone gets out their sledge hammers and starts pounding away until the campus cops arrive. Then they run away. Mission accomplished.

All it would take is a tacit understanding between the students and the administration that puts a few reasonable safety precautions in place but basically promises not to make trouble for any 2 am Confederate statue bashing parties. How hard is that?

A BETTER WAY TO DO THIS?

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and we can't afford to come up short. But when a reader recently asked how being a nonprofit makes Mother Jones different from other news organizations, we realized we needed to lay this out better: Because "in absolutely every way" is essentially the answer.

So we tried to explain why your year-end donations are so essential, and we'd like your help refining our pitch about what make Mother Jones valuable and worth reading to you.

We'd also like your support of our journalism with a year-end donation if you can right now—all online gifts will be doubled until we hit our $350,000 goal thanks to an incredibly generous donor's matching gift pledge.

payment methods

A BETTER WAY TO DO THIS?

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and we can't afford to come up short. But when a reader recently asked how being a nonprofit makes Mother Jones different from other news organizations, we realized we needed to lay this out better: Because "in absolutely every way" is essentially the answer.

So we tried to explain why your year-end donations are so essential, and we'd like your help refining our pitch about what make Mother Jones valuable and worth reading to you.

We'd also like your support of our journalism with a year-end donation if you can right now—all online gifts will be doubled until we hit our $350,000 goal thanks to an incredibly generous donor's matching gift pledge.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate