Greetings and welcome to this week’s edition. This week’s news has been even more heavily focused on the protests sparked by the death of George Floyd and so many others, as well as the movement to end systemic racism. Even news on ostensibly disparate topics, such as the coronavirus and this fall’s upcoming election, have overwhelmingly been filtered through the lens of the mass protests happening around the country and even across the globe.
From a southern history standpoint, the Washington Post details how many of the protests in southern cities have been targeting Confederate monuments, as well as the fires set at the Richmond, VA headquarters of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC), the organization responsible for erecting many of those monuments.
In response to protestors, Virginia’s Governor Ralph Northam has ordered the removal of perhaps the largest of the Confederate monuments, the statue of Robert E Lee that overlooks Richmond’s Monument Avenue; NPR’s Bill Chappell wrote about the decision in this piece, which includes video of the governor’s announcement.
And to put the protests in historical perspective, UVA Today, the University of Virginia’s news outlet, spoke to Kevin Gaines, the Julian Bond Professor of Civil Rights and Social Justice, and asked him to compare this moment to the classic Civil Rights era protests.
The widespread protests, and the dialog they are creating, has led many organizations, including H-Net’s Book Channel and JSTOR, to create catalogues of sources for teaching about the history of institutionalized racism and civil rights protests.
Until next week, take care