How has America changed? Well, consider moves being made at West Point.
Washington’s Naming Commission, which is made up of four civilians as well as retired military vets, reached its final conclusions about seven Department of Defense “assets.” It recommended that sites be renamed in honor of Confederate General Robert E. Lee and Generals P.G.T. Beauregard and William Hardee.
Over the holidays, the United States Military Academy began to purge Lee from its hallowed halls.
According to the Daily News, Lieutenant General Steve Gilland, Superintendent of Police, released a statement on December 26th.
“We will start a multi-phased, Department of Defense directive-based process during the holiday break to remove, rename, modify assets and real estate at the United States Military Academy or West Point installation that memorialize or commemorate the Confederacy, or those who voluntarily served alongside the Confederacy.
He added, “We will conduct those actions with dignity and respect.”
The extraction includes a 20-foot portrait by the man who was the United States Military Academy’s superintendent from 1852-1855. The 1931 portrait of Lee stands tall over West Point’s Jefferson Hall library cadets.
The school has removed these monikers:
- Lee Road
- Lee Gate
- Lee Area Child Development Center
- Lee Housing Area
- Lee Barracks
For a cultural contrast, consider that — from 1979 to 1985 — The Dukes of Hazzard had young boys around the nation enraptured by an automotive General Lee — compliments of CBS and Warner Brothers Television. These days, the military man is being scrubbed by the military — at the academy over which he presided.
In case you didn’t see it:
Times change, people change, and countries change. The Naming Commission also wants to wipe out 2001’s “Reconciliation Plaza” — which was created to honor all Civil War veterans — as part of this evolution.
According to the report:
The Commission recommends that West Point review the Plaza to remove engraved images that honor Confederacy members. West Point should also remove or modify monuments in the plaza that honor the Confederacy. The plaza modifications should be contextualized by historical aspects.
Fox News reports, “The Commission insists it does not intend to erase history.”
It’s impossible to erase the past; it’s too late. We can, however, sweep it under the carpet. What is the impact? We’re sure to discover what it is.