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SPLC Looks Forward to Stone Mountain Park Changes; Urges Community to Stay Engaged

MONTGOMERY, Ala. — The Stone Mountain Memorial Association held its first meeting under the new leadership of Rev. Abraham Mosley, the first African American to lead the state’s authority in its 60-year history, to discuss future changes proposed for Stone Mountain Park.

The following statement is from SPLC Chief of Staff Lecia Brooks:

“We applaud Gov. Kemp for appointing Rev. Abraham Mosley as the new chair of the Stone Mountain Memorial Association. The park was starved for fresh leadership that recognizes the true dehumanizing legacy of the Confederacy.

“The truth is that much like the Confederacy itself, Stone Mountain Park has been lauded for all of the wrong reasons. The numerous streets named after men who fought to preserve chattel slavery is offensive. The Confederate flags that line the walk-up trail’s base send a clear message of exclusion and divisiveness. The state law that keeps the mountain in place despite pleas for change from the community is oppressive and should be overhauled immediately.

“Like any public space, Stone Mountain Park -- which happens to be located in a majority Black neighborhood -- should be welcoming to all. Preserving Confederate heritage can no longer be used as an excuse to salvage a revisionist history that excludes and minimizes the harms done to those they fought to enslave.

“The only way forward is to stop using the park to romanticize this shrine to white supremacy. The proposals made today are a good first step, but we encourage the Board to enact substantive changes to make the park a source of pride for all Americans.”

In 2021, three Confederate symbols have been removed and at least two are pending removal in the state of Georgia. Seven Confederate symbols were removed from Georgia’s public spaces in 2020.