JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Legislation has been introduced by a local Florida State Representative adding to a bill that would strip the power from local governments to remove Confederate monuments and instead would require the state to make such decisions if the bill passed.
Florida State Representative Dean Black is pushing for Senate Bill 1096 to be passed in Florida.
“We needed to protect our history,” says Black.
Black says that this includes Confederate monuments, and it is a reason why this bill is so important to be passed in the state.
“History belongs to all Floridians, and to all Americans even. It is a right and duty and proper exercise of state authority to protect our history,” says Black.
This proposed bill comes after Jacksonville still has one standing Confederate monument in the city after several others have been removed.
Black represents Northeast Florida and is the Chairman of the Republican Party of Duval County. He wants people to understand this bill is to protect all monuments and historical markers in Florida.
“This is dirty politics,” says Ben Frazier.
Frazier, President of the Northside Coalition has been fighting to take down all Confederate monuments in the city for years, he told Action News Jax his perspective on this bill.
“This bill is designed to maintain and honor the same women of the Confederacy in Springfield, that’s all it is, it’s a disguise. This politician and there are others are willing to go to any length to maintain a legacy of racial hatred in Jacksonville,” says Frazier.
As for Black, he doesn’t think that’s the case.
Let’s tell all the history, if there is a Civil War memorial, and you want to put up another monument that contextualizes, then let’s talk about slavery, let’s talk about why the war was fought,” says Black.
This bill still has a few steps if it is officially passed, and if it were to pass, it would go into effect on July 1st.
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