WASHINGTON— Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, released the following statement calling for the removal of Confederate statues from the U.S. Capitol:
“As a nation, we must learn from our past. We need not idolize figures who sought to divide our country and advanced racism. The halls of Congress should honor those who have advanced American values of justice, equality and opportunity. If our congressional leaders are serious about rejecting white supremacy, violent extremism, and racial bigotry, they should remove the Confederate statues from the Capitol.
But that cannot be all they do. Congress must explore how our government is investigating and rooting out hate crimes, violent white supremacist groups and the threat posed by violent white nationalists. Lawmakers should stop pursuing policies that seek to divide, rather than unite, the nation. Hate needs to be removed not only in symbols, but also from our laws.”
The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights is a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 200 national organizations to promote and protect the rights of all persons in the United States. The Leadership Conference works toward an America as good as its ideals. For more information on The Leadership Conference and its 200-plus member organizations, visit www.civilrights.org.