The new law attempts to preserve history by making it illegal to remove monuments that have been in place for more than 40 years.
The Alabama Memorial Preservation Act of 2017, signed into law Wednesday by Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R), protects historical Confederate monuments which have come under fire in recent weeks by Democratic politicians.
The new legislation prohibits:
The relocation, removal, alteration, renaming, or other disturbance of any architecturally significant building, memorial building, memorial street, or monument located on public property which has been in place for 40 or more years.
State Sen. Gerald Allen (R-Tuscaloosa), who proposed the bill, noted protecting monuments is about preserving history for future generations to learn from, the Huffington Post reported.
“I appreciate Gov. Ivey standing up for the thoughtful preservation of Alabama’s history,” Allen said. “Contrary to what its detractors say, the Memorial Preservation Act is intended to preserve all of Alabama’s history ― the good and the bad ― so our children and grandchildren can learn from the past to create a better future.”
Last week, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu (D) had the famous Civil War era monument of Robert E. Lee removed from its place at the center of the city’s most famous traffic circle – it had been in place for more than a century, Breitbart Texas reported.
“It is self-evident that these men did not fight for the United States of America. They fought against it. They may have been warriors, but in this cause, they were not patriots.” Landrieu said. “These monuments celebrate a fictional, sanitized Confederacy.”
On February 6, the City of Charlottesville, Virginia, also voted to remove a statue of Robert E. Lee that had stood in the city park for nearly a century, Breitbart reported.
The decision to erase history from the city sparked outrage as people gathered and protested peacefully for several weeks. Eventually, two organizations and 11 local citizens came together and filed a lawsuit against the City of Charlottesville to stop the removal of historical Confederate monuments.
Other states have already taken steps to preserve historical monuments from those who would seek to rewrite history.
In Mississippi, “no statue, monument, memorial, or landmark from any war can be removed from a public property unless it’s being moved to another approved location or if it blocks drivers from seeing,” WLBT reported.
In 2016, eBay announced they would “prohibit the sale” of Confederate flags following the June 17 attack on Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church by crazed gunman Dylann Roof. Confederate flags were reportedly “selling like crack” after the announcement.