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Charlotte Talks Archive: Confederate Monuments Toppled As Debate Continues Over Their History

Flickr / J. Stephen Conn

Protestors in Chapel Hill on Monday toppled the controversial "Silent Sam" Confederate monument on the UNC campus. The debate over that and similar monuments and statues in North Carolina was the focus of a November conversation on Charlotte Talks in collaboration with UNC-TV.

This program originally aired November 15, 2017

Three months after the events in Charlottesville, Virginia, followed by the toppling of a Confederate statue in Durham, the debate over monuments and memorials to the Confederacy is surfacing again in North Carolina.

UNC-Chapel Hill leaders are weighing the removal of the "Silent Sam" statue, which has been a lightning rod for years, and was the focus of protests following Charlottesville.

That statue is just one of more than 200 Civil War statues, memorials and markers in North Carolina. Most pay tribute to the Confederate side.

In September, Gov. Cooper requested the relocation of three Confederate monuments on the State Capitol ground. A decision on the request was delayed until April.

A plurality of Southerners - 43 percent - told a newly-released Winthrop University poll that Confederate monuments and memorials should be left as is. Only five percent supported their complete removal.

Credit Chris Miller / WFAE
Mike Collins, left, and Deborah Holt Noel listen to Charlotte activist Bree Newsome on UNC-TV's "Focus On: Confederate Monuments."

Mike Collins and UNC-TV's Deborah Holt Noel are joined by historians, advocates and others for a conversation on the history of Confederate monuments and their relevance in today's society.