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The city of Charlottesville, Virginia, will no longer celebrate the birthday of Thomas Jefferson, the author of the U.S. Declaration of Independence, founder of the University of Virginia, and third president of the United States.
The Associated Press reported Tuesday:
Charlottesville - Virginia - Thomas - Jefferson - Birthday
Charlottesville, Virginia, will no longer celebrate Thomas Jefferson’s birthday as an official city holiday and instead will observe a day recognizing the emancipation of enslaved African-Americans.
The city council voted Monday night to scrap the decades-old April 13 holiday honoring the slave-holding president and Founding Father. Charlottesville will now mark Liberation and Freedom Day on March 3, the day U.S. Army forces arrived in the city in 1865.
Charlottesville - Prominence - University - Jefferson - Masterpiece
Charlottesville owes much of its contemporary prominence to the university, which still describes itself as “Jefferson’s Masterpiece.” Jefferson’s estate, Monticello, is also a major tourist attraction drawing visitors to the city.
In August 2017, riots broke out between neo-Nazis and Antifa in Charlottesville. The core issue was a dispute over the removal of a statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee from a local park.
Supremacists - Protests - Statue - Removal - Antifa
The neo-Nazis and white supremacists hijacked legitimate protests against the statue’s removal, and Antifa mobs eclipsed peaceful protest against the racists and the statue. One of the peaceful protesters, Heather Heyer, was murdered by a neo-Nazi, who was sentenced to life in prison last week.
President Donald Trump came under criticism for his response to the riots, first because he did not specifically condemn the neo-Nazis in his initial statement, and later because he was misquoted by the mainstream media as referring to the neo-Nazis as “very fine people” (he had, in fact, said that they should be “condemned totally”).
Press - Conference - Charlottesville - Trump - Effort
In his press conference discussing Charlottesville, Trump had predicted that the effort to erase history would not stop with Confederate statues, but would eventually extend to Jefferson and George Washington (emphasis added):
Those people were also...
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