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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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April shouldn’t be Confederate History Month, protesters say

Activists gathered at the Brazos County Administration Building to protest the Brazos County commissioners’ proclamation of April as “Confederate History and Heritage” month Tuesday.
The proclamation comes after the Texas chapter of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, an organization of all-male descendants of confederate soldiers, proposed the holiday to the Brazos County Commissioners Court. All Brazos County commissioners approved the proclamation.
Members of “Texas A&M University Anti-Racism,” the university’s chapter of the United Left Alliance, and community members who gathered at the Administration Building Tuesday said the proclamation was in poor taste.  
Gary Bray, the division commander of the Texas chapter of SCV, said the month is necessary to honor past Confederate soldiers.
“Our organization exists to uphold up the good name of the Confederate soldiers and the cause they fought for,” Bray said. “It’s not so much the old Confederacy, and it’s not about slavery. We have black members, we have Hispanic members and Indian members.”
The commissioners’ office released a statement saying they are not supporting slavery with the proclamation of Confederate History Month.
“Our recognition of Confederate history also acknowledges that slavery was one of the causes of the war, and was ended by the war and is hereby condemned,” the statement said.
Brent Green, Class of 2014 and member of United Left Alliance, said the organizations present to protest the proclamation were disturbed by the commissioner’s denial of any racist implications that go along with dedicating a month to Confederate history.
“No one in the community has spoken up enough about this before and how this is inherently a racist and symbolically violent act on minority groups,” Green said. “The court made sure, in their language to condemn slavery, but there’s no correct way to do a wrong thing.”
Margarita Zollo, an environmental design freshman and a member of TAMU Anti-Racism, was present at the protest.
“We were really just there to let them hear a few different voices,” Zollo said. “I thought we ought to do something … We wanted to lend our voices to people who were hurt by this proclamation.”
Before the proclamation of the month, a day was already marked to celebrate Confederate history, Confederate Memorial Day, on April 26th. According to Brazos County Commissioner Sammy Catalena, this is not an official holiday. SCV has been trying to get the month recognized for several years.

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