Nice Time! Statue Of American Hero Barbara Johns To Replace Racist Traitor In US Capitol
Noted traitor and professional war loser Robert E. Lee is no longer welcome in the US Capitol. Lee's statue was removed from the building's crypt Monday morning. The "but our (white) history!" crowd should content themselves with the knowledge that Lee's statue will go commit treason on a farm upstate or, more accurately, the Virginia Museum of History & Culture.
Last night, Virginia removed its statue of Robert E. Lee from the U.S. Capitol. This is an important step forward… https://t.co/PGfTSY8ukU— Ralph Northam (@Ralph Northam)1608557207.0
House Reps. David McEachin and Jennifer Wexton from Virginia released a joint statement Monday declaring the removal of Lee's statue a "historic and long-overdue moment for our Commonwealth."
"The Robert E. Lee statue honors a legacy of division, oppression, and racism — a dark period in the history of our Commonwealth and our country," they said. "There is no reason his statue should be one of the two representing Virginia in the U.S. Capitol."
Lee was a garbage human being who separated enslaved families when not beating them into submission — or more like ordered them beaten. He was too lazy for even that amount of physical labor.
He also absurdly and grotesquely claimed that white people suffered more from slavery than the Black people who were enslaved against their will. If he felt so strongly about it, Lee was welcome to trade.
GENERAL RACIST ASSHOLE: I think it however a greater evil to the white man than to the black race, & while my feelings are strongly enlisted in behalf of the latter, my sympathies are more strong for the former. The blacks are immeasurably better off here than in Africa, morally, socially & physically. The painful discipline they are undergoing, is necessary for their instruction as a race, & I hope will prepare & lead them to better things. How long their subjugation may be necessary is known & ordered by a wise Merciful Providence. Their emancipation will sooner result from the mild & melting influence of Christianity, than the storms & tempests of fiery Controversy.
The removal of the statue of Robert E. Lee and its forthcoming replacement by a tribute to Barbara Johns of Virgini… https://t.co/gLFKdnKdGu— Nancy Pelosi (@Nancy Pelosi)1608563868.0
Last week, a commission established this year by the Virginia General Assembly recommended replacing Lee's statue with one of an actual American hero, Barbara Johns.
The civil rights leader began her awesomeness early. In 1951, when she was a 16-year-old student at Robert Russa Moton High School in Farmville, Virginia, she dared call bullshit over the separate and unequal school conditions and resources Black students endured. Her sister Joan Johns Cobb explained:
The school we went to was overcrowded. Consequently, the county decided to build three tarpaper shacks for us to hold classes in. A tarpaper shack looks like a dilapidated black building, which is similar to a chicken coop on a farm. It's very unsightly. In winter the school was very cold. And a lot of times we had to put on our jackets.
Now, the students that sat closest to the wood stove were very warm and the ones who sat farthest away were very cold. And I remember being cold a lot of times and sitting in the classroom with my jacket on. When it rained, we would get water through the ceiling. So there were lots of pails sitting around the classroom. And sometimes we had to raise our umbrellas to keep the water off our heads. It was a very difficult setting for trying to learn.
And I remember we were always talking about how bad the conditions were but we didn't know what to do about it. So one day my sister and a group of students that she chose decided to do something about it.
Meanwhile, not far away in the small town of Farmville, white students were educated in America.
Fed up, Johns bravely led 450 fellow classmates in a two-week-long strike. They picketed the school, inside and out, with signs that stated, "We want a new school or none at all" and "Down with tar-paper shacks." These are both evergreen sentiments.
Years before the Montgomery Bus Boycott or the Greensboro sit-ins, Barbara Johns led her entire all-Black high scho… https://t.co/8o2BYS4MQp— Kamala Harris (@Kamala Harris)1580751722.0
The NAACP Legal Defense Fund later filed suit on behalf of the students and demanded schools be integrated. This student protest was the source of litigation that, three years later, would combine with five other cases as Brown v. Board of Education, which even new Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett probably maybe believes was decided correctly, if you twist her arm.
Despite his privileged existence, Robert E. Lee still waged bloody war against his homeland. Johns grew up in a country that barely considered her human but she believed in the nation's potential and helped changed the world for all Virginians.
Unfortunately, Johns died in 1991 and won't witness this well-deserved honor, but as many of us will say on January 20, better late than never.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes reviews for the A.V. Club and make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."