NC Gov: Allow Removal of Confederate Statues Lest Protesters get Hurt Pulling Them Down

Toppled Statue Durham NC Jonathan Drew, The Associated Press
Jonathan Drew/AP

On Tuesday night North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper (D) called on the state legislature to grant counties, municipalities, and the state the ability to remove Confederate statues lest protesters get hurt pulling them down.

NC adopted a law in 2015 that protects historical statues from being removed, and Cooper wants this law reversed.

Cooper used a Facebook post to reference the way slaves were once kept in chains in the South. And he criticized the existence of Confederate monuments without mentioning that Southern slave-owners were Democrats and that the Confederacy was a Democrat nation. Rather, he said, “These monuments should come down. Our Civil War history is important, but it belongs in textbooks and museums.”

He then transitioned to public safety, saying, “My first responsibility as Governor is to protect North Carolinians and keep them safe. The likelihood of protesters being injured or worse as they may try to topple any one of the hundreds of monuments in our state, concerns me.”

After voicing his concern that protesters might harm themselves while pulling down historical statues, Cooper said he also worries that protesters will face backlash from “white supremacists ” who could “swarm the site” to retaliate for the historical statue being toppled.

He called for the repeal of the 2015 law that “prevents removal or relocation of historical statues” and asked the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources to calculate “the cost and logistics of removing Confederate monuments from state property.”

Cooper concluded his remarks by saying, “Conversations about race and our past are never simple or easy, they are deeply personal and emotional. But we must do what we know is right, and we must do it the right way.” He then thanked viewers and signed off without criticizing his Democrat predecessors for being the Southern slave-owners who fought Republican efforts to secure emancipation for blacks during the Civil War.

AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of Bullets with AWR Hawkins, a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at


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