CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – The City of Charleston’s Commission on Racial Equity has been discussing new ways to bring about change in Charleston for roughly one month now.
Thursday night, a subcommittee focused on monuments and markers.
The committee discussed some statues they feel are out of touch with current times, but spent more time focusing on finding and creating space to celebrate people and cultures they feel have been overlooked.
There was some discussion about the Calhoun statue that was removed earlier this year, and the Heritage Act which protects certain markers:
“We were able to take the position, quite rightly, that the Heritage Act did not apply to the Calhoun statue and ultimately the Attorney General’s office did agree with us.”
However much of the conversation centered around adding additional markers and monuments celebrating histories and people that have gone more unnoticed.
“But one of the markers that I would like to see, because you know every carriage driver, every walking tour person stops in front of 134…they should talk about what those articles of secession meant to enslaved people.”
The group received reports from other cities, including one from Monument Lab out of Philadelphia, to help brainstorm a framework for moving forward:
“The point is, we have models to follow, we could apply for some, we could reach out to Monuments Lab and see if there is a way that the city can apply for funds.”
All of the racial equity subcommittees now are about 30 days into 90 day projects, meaning they have about two more months to create final proposals.