NEW ORLEANS – On Monday, August 17, during a court hearing in Lafayette, Louisiana, Move the Mindset (MTM) and community members will call on the 15th Judicial District Court to nullify a permanent injunction which prevents the removal of a Jim Crow statue honoring Confederate Gen. Alfred Mouton located on public property. The Executive and Legislative branches of Lafayette’s government have already consented to the removal of the statue from public property. The Judicial branch of government is the final voice to speak on the issue.
For 98 years, the statue in front of the courthouse has served as a living symbol of white supremacy, erected to promote the same anti-Black vigilante violence encouraged by Confederate Gen. Alfred Mouton prior to and during the Civil War. Mouton helped train a local “Vigilante Committee” which was initially formed to fight crime, but the group began administering their own brand of ‘justice,’ which included whippings, lynchings, and exiling Black residents who were deemed ‘undesirables.’
The following statement is from SPLC Chief of Staff Lecia Brooks:
“The Gen. Mouton Confederate monument underscores the systemic anti-Black racism that has existed in this country for decades. Its mere presence continues the harmful and irresponsible narrative creation intended by the United Daughters of the Confederacy, as they erected hundreds of statues across the South to distort American history and celebrate traitors to the Union who fought to ensure that Black people remained in chains.
“The SPLC supports and joins MTM and concerned members of the Lafayette community in their fight for justice by calling on the 15th Judicial District Court to nullify this outdated injunction in order to remove this Confederate symbol from public property. Symbols exalting a cruel and inhumane chapter of our history do not belong on public lands.”
The SPLC does not support erasing history, nor the defacing and/or destruction of any historic artifact. Learn about Confederate symbols on public land in the SPLC’s “Whose Heritage?” report.
In 2018, the SPLC released an updated version of its Whose Heritage? report, identifying nearly 1,800 Confederate monuments, parks, schools, state holidays and other symbols of the Confederacy in public spaces across the South and the nation.
In Louisiana alone, 81 Confederate symbols remain on public land; 31 of those symbols are monuments. To date, at least 16 of those Confederate monuments sit on courthouse and/or government office grounds across Louisiana.
Lecia Brooks is available for print, radio and broadcast interviews. To arrange an interview, please contact Kimberly Allen at firstname.lastname@example.org or (470) 582-6714.