Tennessee Valley Civil War Round Table President discusses removal of Civil War monuments

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. –  The issue of removing Confederate War monuments has drawn opinions from both sides for years. Some believe all history should be protected, others argue the monuments pay tribute to a legacy of slavery.

John Mason is the President of the Tennessee Valley Civil War Round Table and said members of his group don’t hold the same opinions.

“They believe that all the symbols of the Confederacy are sacrosanct and should never be disturbed. Then you have a few of us that are a little bit on the other side of that,” Mason explained of the differing views.  “Their ideas were right, everything about the Confederacy was right, but they were invaded by an outside army that destroyed all those hopes and dreams, and the great things they were doing for the world. As I say, it’s a myth. I believe that those artifacts associated with that myth, I don’t believe they have any place in the normal everyday life of America anymore.”

However, Mason doesn’t believe someone should destroy the monuments and other artifacts.

“If there’s a museum, if there’s a Civil War battlefield like Shiloh, and Chattanooga, and Chickamauga, and all of those, absolutely, you have a place for Civil War historiography,” Mason said.

Mason has a family member from generations ago who fought for the Confederacy. He said he disagrees with Governor Kay Ivey’s move to sign the Confederate Monument Protections Bill into law,

“I think if you want to bring a state together, if we want to bring the country together, and get rid of some of the things that divide us and instead move forward as a jointed union, these kind of things we have to finally put to bed,” Mason expressed.

We want to reiterate Mason’s views do not reflect everyone’s beliefs. The Sons of Confederate Veterans say the citizen-soldiers who fought for the Confederacy personified the best qualities of America. You can learn more about their group by visiting www.scv.org.