• Take It Down Now: Confederate Troops Memorial, Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza
    On Valentine's Day 1912, just two years before the first World War officially broke out and 47 years after the Civil War ended, Arizona became a U.S. state, adding to the growing diversity of the government. That diversity extended to people of all ethnicities, backgrounds, religions, and beliefs. As citizens of the United States and as upholders of the Constitution, we should do our utmost each day to ensure that everyone entitled to these liberties, can receive them. During a dark period in American history, many men and women were transported like objects to the Americas in what became known as the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. After more than 400 years of slavery, due to the diligence of numerous abolitionists, the American government finally came to understand the inhumanity and cruelty of slavery and abolished it. The U.S. had been practicing slavery up until 1864, when the 13th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution was passed, one year after President Lincoln's Gettysburg Address and his signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. However, many felt that the liberties etched into our Constitution did not extend to everyone. The South heavily relied on slave labor and had built their society using those African men and women. Many Southerners believed that slaves did not have the right to the freedoms the United States promised. Fearing equal treatment of African peoples and the loss of their free labor, seven states seceded to form a separate government where they could keep the institution of slavery. They declared themselves The Confederate States of America, or the Confederacy, and as such, enemies of the U.S. Despite the North prevailing victorious in the fight against the Confederacy, there have been monuments erected to honor the memory of these men around our great nation. in Phoenix, there is one in Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza. The monument was erected in 1961, nearly one hundred years after the Confederacy fell. It was purchased by the Daughters of the Confederacy, a group that paid for the distribution of Confederate statues in mass quantities during the Civil Rights Era. They believed that the Confederacy and its soldiers represented a society of white supremacy. As a result of this thinking, the Daughters of the Confederacy felt these Confederates would be efficient propaganda for anti-Civil Rights. Most Confederate monuments were similarly erected during the Civil Rights era for the same purpose, not during or immediately after the Civil War which many mistakenly believe. They were produced to intimidate minorities, mainly black Americans and to vindicate white supremacy. This line of thinking is not a representation of what America stood for then, and is definitely not what America stands for now. Statues and monuments are created to honor figures of prestige. We must remember that the Confederate Troops Memorial is a monument erected to honor the Confederates who took up arms against the Constitution of the United States, men who sought to keep people from their inalienable rights. In history, when a civilization or monarch was brought down, their monuments were also toppled to signal to everyone that the people of that society would not stand for the way of life that the civilization or monarch had stood for. Why then should we keep the Confederate Troops Memorial in a public plaza, if we support the U.S. Constitution when it states "all men are created equal" and "neither slavery not involuntary servitude...shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction"? The real heroes who should be honored with memorials and statues are the men and women who fought for what's right, who defended the Constitution and the civil liberties of all. As a black person living in Arizona, I don't like the thought that a monument exists that honors any group that sought to prevent people like myself from having rights. It is still propaganda, as we saw this past summer in Charlottesville, Virginia. People still look to these monuments to validate intimidating black people and people of color. Taking it down sends a message that our community will not tolerate any action that terrorizes another nor any hate crime and helps black people and people of color feel secure. If I ever have children, I would like to walk them through the Plaza and show them a monument dedicated to a group who fought to save people, not threaten them. Please remember how diverse your constituents are. They elected you to represent them. I am writing this petition to implore you, Mayor Greg Stanton, to represent us and remove this monument which serves as a pedestal which honors people who did not honor us. No matter how much societal change we enact, it will be for naught if we remain awed by the deeds these men performed. I agree that history should not be lost, and to quote Governor Ducey, "I don't think that we should try to hide our history." But there is a difference between honoring our history and exhibiting it. Statues, as we can all agree, are erected to honor someone or something. These men don't deserve to be honored by a monument in our great and diverse nation any more than our enemies abroad do. They did not serve our country; they served theirs, the Confederacy. That is why i think that this monument's place is in a museum and not the Memorial Plaza.
    53 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Chelsea Bailey
  • Renaming and Reclaiming the bridge
    On Saturday, August 12th, white nationalists marched through Charlottesville, communities and the University of Virginia campus, rallying around a statue of the Confederacy and carrying torches evoking a history of violent racial terrorism. The next day in Charlottesville they killed in the name of their white supremacist symbols. Protesters were rammed by a car killing someone in a terrorist attack. These symbols were not chosen randomly. Confederate monuments have been erected and remain as a direct rebuke to the recognition of the full humanity of Black people. Confederate monuments were built and given places of honor in public space as gains in this recognition have been made and it is the commitment to the reversal of this recognition of humanity that draws white nationalists to these symbols. These symbols of white supremacy have always been memorials to the cause of slavery and the denial of humanity to Black people. Now they are being weaponized to rally white supremacists. We have the power to diffuse these modern-day lynch mobs by removing these statues altogether, instead of giving white supremacists a rally point. Confederate statues and named institutions are more than mere symbols of a heritage but instead, they are an assertion of the continued imposition of white supremacy and its current political power. Terrorists in Charlottesville understood this and were willing to kill in the name of this, we must be determined to persist in the face of this white supremacist terror. Removing all Confederate statues would be one step among many in sending the message that we are no longer honoring white supremacy at a societal level. We've already many communities take the step to address these monuments in cities like Tampa and New Orleans. Join with me today and pledge to work to remove all Confederate statues or names from our community. The Edmund Pettus Bridge is named after a known confederate general and KKK member. His memory causes more trauma to the people that put in so much work to be a better Selma.
    64 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Na'Kita Birdsong
  • Take It Down Now: Rename Wheeler Drive to John Lewis Drive
    On Saturday, August 12th, white nationalists marched through Charlottesville, communities and the University of Virginia campus, rallying around a statue of the Confederacy and carrying torches evoking a history of violent racial terrorism. The next day in Charlottesville they killed in the name of their white supremacist symbols. Protesters were rammed by a car killing someone in a terrorist attack. These symbols were not chosen randomly. Confederate monuments have been erected and remain as a direct rebuke to the recognition of the full humanity of Black people. Confederate monuments were built and given places of honor in public space as gains in this recognition have been made and it is the commitment to the reversal of this recognition of humanity that draws white nationalists to these symbols. These symbols of white supremacy have always been memorials to the cause of slavery and the denial of humanity to Black people. Now they are being weaponized to rally white supremacists. We have the power to diffuse these modern-day lynch mobs by removing these statues altogether, instead of giving white supremacists a rally point. Confederate statues and named institutions are more than mere symbols of a heritage but instead, they are an assertion of the continued imposition of white supremacy and its current political power. Terrorists in Charlottesville understood this and were willing to kill in the name of this, we must be determined to persist in the face of this white supremacist terror. Removing all Confederate statues would be one step among many in sending the message that we are no longer honoring white supremacy at a societal level. We've already many communities take the step to address these monuments in cities like Tampa and New Orleans. Join with me today and pledge to work to remove all Confederate statues or names from our community.
    22 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Tamara Hayes
  • Take It Down Now: Confederate statue in Hemming Park
    On Saturday, August 12th, white nationalists marched through Charlottesville, communities and the University of Virginia campus, rallying around a statue of the Confederacy and carrying torches evoking a history of violent racial terrorism. The next day in Charlottesville they killed in the name of their white supremacist symbols. Protesters were rammed by a car killing someone in a terrorist attack. These symbols were not chosen randomly. Confederate monuments have been erected and remain as a direct rebuke to the recognition of the full humanity of Black people. Confederate monuments were built and given places of honor in public space as gains in this recognition have been made and it is the commitment to the reversal of this recognition of humanity that draws white nationalists to these symbols. These symbols of white supremacy have always been memorials to the cause of slavery and the denial of humanity to Black people. Now they are being weaponized to rally white supremacists. We have the power to diffuse these modern-day lynch mobs by removing these statues altogether, instead of giving white supremacists a rally point. Confederate statues and named institutions are more than mere symbols of a heritage but instead, they are an assertion of the continued imposition of white supremacy and its current political power. Terrorists in Charlottesville understood this and were willing to kill in the name of this, we must be determined to persist in the face of this white supremacist terror. Removing all Confederate statues would be one step among many in sending the message that we are no longer honoring white supremacy at a societal level. We've already many communities take the step to address these monuments in cities like Tampa and New Orleans. Join with me today and pledge to work to remove all Confederate statues or names from our community.
    77 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Starkishawa Howard
  • Take It Down Now: Eternal Flame of the Confederacy
    On Saturday, August 12th, white nationalists marched through Charlottesville, communities and the University of Virginia campus, rallying around a statue of the Confederacy and carrying torches evoking a history of violent racial terrorism. The next day in Charlottesville they killed in the name of their white supremacist symbols. Protesters were rammed by a car killing someone in a terrorist attack. These symbols were not chosen randomly. Confederate monuments have been erected and remain as a direct rebuke to the recognition of the full humanity of Black people. Confederate monuments were built and given places of honor in public space as gains in this recognition have been made and it is the commitment to the reversal of this recognition of humanity that draws white nationalists to these symbols. These symbols of white supremacy have always been memorials to the cause of slavery and the denial of humanity to Black people. Now they are being weaponized to rally white supremacists. We have the power to diffuse these modern-day lynch mobs by removing these statues altogether, instead of giving white supremacists a rally point. Confederate statues and named institutions are more than mere symbols of a heritage but instead, they are an assertion of the continued imposition of white supremacy and its current political power. Terrorists in Charlottesville understood this and were willing to kill in the name of this, we must be determined to persist in the face of this white supremacist terror. Removing all Confederate statues would be one step among many in sending the message that we are no longer honoring white supremacy at a societal level. We've already many communities take the step to address these monuments in cities like Tampa and New Orleans. Join with me today and pledge to work to remove all Confederate statues or names from our community.
    14 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Eunoia Jean
  • Take It Down Now: Eternal Flame of the Confederacy in Atlanta
    On Saturday, August 12th, white nationalists marched through Charlottesville, communities and the University of Virginia campus, rallying around a statue of the Confederacy and carrying torches evoking a history of violent racial terrorism. The next day in Charlottesville they killed in the name of their white supremacist symbols. Protesters were rammed by a car killing someone in a terrorist attack. These symbols were not chosen randomly. Confederate monuments have been erected and remain as a direct rebuke to the recognition of the full humanity of Black people. Confederate monuments were built and given places of honor in public space as gains in this recognition have been made and it is the commitment to the reversal of this recognition of humanity that draws white nationalists to these symbols. These symbols of white supremacy have always been memorials to the cause of slavery and the denial of humanity to Black people. Now they are being weaponized to rally white supremacists. We have the power to diffuse these modern-day lynch mobs by removing these statues altogether, instead of giving white supremacists a rally point. Confederate statues and named institutions are more than mere symbols of a heritage but instead, they are an assertion of the continued imposition of white supremacy and its current political power. Terrorists in Charlottesville understood this and were willing to kill in the name of this, we must be determined to persist in the face of this white supremacist terror. This specific monument, The Eternal Flame of Confederacy (a gaslight lamp which survived the Civil War and multiple relocations throughout downtown in the ensuing years) has recently been relocated to the Buckhead area after most recently standing in Underground Atlanta. One of 50 lamps installed in the city in 1855, the black gaslight stood in what would ultimately become Underground. During the bombardment of Atlanta by Union troops in 1864, a shell fragment ricocheted off the lamp, striking Solomon Luckie—a free African-American barber in the city. Luckie had the unlucky distinction of being one of the first casualties of the siege on Atlanta. His leg was amputated in hopes of saving his life, but he died hours later. [1] Despite the real events that inspired the placement of this confederate monument, most would say that this lamp celebrates the ways of the south during the civil war, which is an unacceptable occasion to celebrate. Removing all Confederate statues would be one step among many in sending the message that we are no longer honoring white supremacy at a societal level. We've already many communities take the step to address these monuments in cities like Tampa and New Orleans. Join with me today and pledge to work to remove all Confederate statues or names from our community. [1]: https://atlanta.curbed.com/2017/6/8/15760828/antebellum-lamppost-atlanta-underground-history-center
    67 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Camielle Shaw
  • Take It Down Now: Robert E. Lee Blvd
    On Saturday, August 12th, white nationalists marched through Charlottesville, communities and the University of Virginia campus, rallying around a statue of the Confederacy and carrying torches evoking a history of violent racial terrorism. The next day in Charlottesville they killed in the name of their white supremacist symbols. Protesters were rammed by a car killing someone in a terrorist attack. These symbols were not chosen randomly. Confederate monuments have been erected and remain as a direct rebuke to the recognition of the full humanity of Black people. Confederate monuments were built and given places of honor in public space as gains in this recognition have been made and it is the commitment to the reversal of this recognition of humanity that draws white nationalists to these symbols. These symbols of white supremacy have always been memorials to the cause of slavery and the denial of humanity to Black people. Now they are being weaponized to rally white supremacists. We have the power to diffuse these modern-day lynch mobs by removing these statues altogether, instead of giving white supremacists a rally point. Confederate statues and named institutions are more than mere symbols of a heritage but instead, they are an assertion of the continued imposition of white supremacy and its current political power. Terrorists in Charlottesville understood this and were willing to kill in the name of this, we must be determined to persist in the face of this white supremacist terror. Removing all Confederate statues would be one step among many in sending the message that we are no longer honoring white supremacy at a societal level. We've already many communities take the step to address these monuments in cities like Tampa and New Orleans. Join with me today and pledge to work to remove all Confederate statues or names from our community.
    17 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Chelsea Simone
  • Take It Down Now: Remake Mississippi Flag
    On Saturday, August 12th, white nationalists marched through Charlottesville, communities and the University of Virginia campus, rallying around a statue of the Confederacy and carrying torches evoking a history of violent racial terrorism. The next day in Charlottesville they killed in the name of their white supremacist symbols. Protesters were rammed by a car killing someone in a terrorist attack. These symbols were not chosen randomly. Confederate monuments have been erected and remain as a direct rebuke to the recognition of the full humanity of Black people. Confederate monuments were built and given places of honor in public space as gains in this recognition have been made and it is the commitment to the reversal of this recognition of humanity that draws white nationalists to these symbols. These symbols of white supremacy have always been memorials to the cause of slavery and the denial of humanity to Black people. Now they are being weaponized to rally white supremacists. We have the power to diffuse these modern-day lynch mobs by removing these statues altogether, instead of giving white supremacists a rally point. Confederate statues and named institutions are more than mere symbols of a heritage but instead, they are an assertion of the continued imposition of white supremacy and its current political power. Terrorists in Charlottesville understood this and were willing to kill in the name of this, we must be determined to persist in the face of this white supremacist terror. Removing all Confederate statues would be one step among many in sending the message that we are no longer honoring white supremacy at a societal level. We've already many communities take the step to address these monuments in cities like Tampa and New Orleans. Join with me today and pledge to work to remove all Confederate statues or names from our community.
    50 of 100 Signatures
    Created by DJ Gooden
  • Take It Down Now: Remove Adm. Semmes Statue
    On Saturday, August 12th, white nationalists marched through Charlottesville, communities and the University of Virginia campus, rallying around a statue of the Confederacy and carrying torches evoking a history of violent racial terrorism. The next day in Charlottesville they killed in the name of their white supremacist symbols. Protesters were rammed by a car killing someone in a terrorist attack. These symbols were not chosen randomly. Confederate monuments have been erected and remain as a direct rebuke to the recognition of the full humanity of Black people. Confederate monuments were built and given places of honor in public space as gains in this recognition have been made and it is the commitment to the reversal of this recognition of humanity that draws white nationalists to these symbols. These symbols of white supremacy have always been memorials to the cause of slavery and the denial of humanity to Black people. Now they are being weaponized to rally white supremacists. We have the power to diffuse these modern-day lynch mobs by removing these statues altogether, instead of giving white supremacists a rally point. Confederate statues and named institutions are more than mere symbols of a heritage but instead, they are an assertion of the continued imposition of white supremacy and its current political power. Terrorists in Charlottesville understood this and were willing to kill in the name of this, we must be determined to persist in the face of this white supremacist terror. Removing all Confederate statues would be one step among many in sending the message that we are no longer honoring white supremacy at a societal level. We've already many communities take the step to address these monuments in cities like Tampa and New Orleans. Join with me today and pledge to work to remove all Confederate statues or names from our community.
    62 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Asia Smith Picture
  • Take It Down Now:
    On Saturday, August 12th, white nationalists marched through Charlottesville, communities and the University of Virginia campus, rallying around a statue of the Confederacy and carrying torches evoking a history of violent racial terrorism. The next day in Charlottesville they killed in the name of their white supremacist symbols. Protesters were rammed by a car killing someone in a terrorist attack. These symbols were not chosen randomly. Confederate monuments have been erected and remain as a direct rebuke to the recognition of the full humanity of Black people. Confederate monuments were built and given places of honor in public space as gains in this recognition have been made and it is the commitment to the reversal of this recognition of humanity that draws white nationalists to these symbols. These symbols of white supremacy have always been memorials to the cause of slavery and the denial of humanity to Black people. Now they are being weaponized to rally white supremacists. We have the power to diffuse these modern-day lynch mobs by removing these statues altogether, instead of giving white supremacists a rally point. Confederate statues and named institutions are more than mere symbols of a heritage but instead, they are an assertion of the continued imposition of white supremacy and its current political power. Terrorists in Charlottesville understood this and were willing to kill in the name of this, we must be determined to persist in the face of this white supremacist terror. Removing all Confederate statues would be one step among many in sending the message that we are no longer honoring white supremacy at a societal level. We've already many communities take the step to address these monuments in cities like Tampa and New Orleans. Join with me today and pledge to work to remove all Confederate statues or names from our community.
    39 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Amina Person
  • Change the National Anthem to Bodak Yellow
    The National Anthem was written during a time when white Americans could have slaves and no women were unable to vote. I want a national anthem that empowers women and talks about economic prosperity for all. And that anthem is Bodak Yellow.
    35 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Wintana Melekin
  • Change The National Anthem To "Lift Every Voice"
    The song "Lift Every Voice" is a much more appropriate song to claim as the National Anthem. While many people love the "Star Spangled Banner", little do they know that the third verse of the song contains racist lyrics that celebrate slavery: "And where is that band who so vauntingly That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion A home and a Country should leave us no more? Their blood has wash’d out their foul footstep’s pollution. No refuge could save the hireling and slave From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave, And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave." Not only does the third verse celebrate slavery, but the person who wrote the song (Francis Scott Key) was a racist lawyer who owned slaves. This may be mind-boggling, but these are facts. The National Anthem should be a non-controversal song that everyone can enjoy.
    90 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Zaheer Smith Picture