Georgia lawmakers brace for delicate debate over Civil War monuments

A scene from a Confederate flag rally at Stone Mountain Park this summer – one of the factors that pushed state authorities to consider a monument to Martin Luther King at the summit. Special/John Amis

Georgia lawmakers are preparing for what’s likely to be a delicate, and raw, debate over the dozens of Civil War monuments and symbols scattered across the state or sanctioned by its government.

These fraught discussions have raged behind the scenes for decades but were sparked anew by the deadly violence of the chaotic white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va. And this time, Georgia leaders say they are open to broader changes to laws that have safeguarded Rebel symbols.

Reaching a consensus in an election-year environment, punctuated by dueling calls from candidates over some of Georgia’s most prominent symbols, won’t be easy. A racially charged Facebook exchange between a GOP lawmaker and his Democratic ex-colleague underscored the epic challenge ahead.

More: Georgia gears up for fraught legislative debate on Rebel monuments


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