GETTYSBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Protesters are at odds over Confederate monuments in Gettysburg.
A group rallied at the battlefield on Friday to push to take down 12 Confederate monuments that they say are a painful reminder of slavery and racism. They were met with counterprotesters who argue the monuments are an important piece of history.
Irish Whaley was among the group protesting.
“They need to go. They’re not a reminder of positive,” Whaley said. “Gettysburg is hellbent on keeping them here and they know doggone well it’s not for the soldiers that fought here. It’s to keep the white supremacy alive, to keep us reminded.”
Counterprotesters like John Minton believe they’re trying to erase history.
“Cancel culture includes canceling history. They think like they did in the Soviet Union, if you eradicate the past then it never occured,” Minton said.
For veterans like John Molloy, this issue feels personal.
“We’re here to stand up for the Confederate veterans who actually were Americans,” Molloy said. “They just had a difference of opinion, and they should be recognized for their service.”
At a time when people are more focused than ever on racial justice some say this is just part of a larger fight.
“Til they’re gone, we’re not gone. We’re staying,” Whaley said.
Gettysburg is a national military park, so it’s regulated by federal law. That means it’s up to lawmakers in Washington D.C. to order any changes.