Downtown Denton awoke to find the familiar and arguably infamous Confederate soldier monument vandalized this morning. The statue in question sits on an arch with non-working segregated water fountains at the base. As of early this morning, it has the words, "THIS IS RACIST" written in red spray painted capital letters across the top of the arch. The statue has been the subject of much debate recently, with many calling to have it torn down or at the very least relocated to a less prominent location. Many others, thought the statue should stay (you can read comments on our Facebook page). A group who call themselves Dentonites Against Racist Traditions, had a few meetings to discuss how to get the statue, which is a Texas Historical Marker, removed. The group, which sought to work to remove the statue within the confines of the law, recently took a break from their meetings to look into removing the historical marker.
Last month, we posted a historical account of the statue and its background. The statue, itself, was erected by the Daughters of the Confederacy to pay tribute to fallen Texas soldiers, and not actually the Confederacy. One could make the argument, however, that anything in homage to the south/Confederacy should be looked upon with a critical or at least objective eye after the events in Charleston, South Carolina earlier this summer.
This is the second act of race-related vandalism to hit the square this summer after the hashtag, #BlackLivesMatter, was spray painted on the fence near the Wine Squared patio on Pecan St. last month.
As of the writing of this article, no suspects have been arrested related to this incident. That said, there are apparently surveillance cameras mounted inside the Courthouse that are setup to monitor the statue. Whatever your thoughts on the monument, this definitely gets the conversation rolling again.