A group of civil rights leaders and community leaders in Southern California and Arizona is demanding that Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey “begin removal of all Confederate monuments in Arizona.”
The civil rights and community leaders, who represent the Los Angeles Urban Policy Roundtable, promise that they do not seek any “defecation” relating to the monuments.
“Removal is what we’re after, not defecation,” said Pedro Baez, president of the Arizona branch of the Los Angeles Urban Policy Roundtable, in a Saturday press advisory obtained by The Daily Caller.
“Just as we have condemned graffiti in the past, we condemn whoever did this vandalism,” Baez also said. “Our position is whoever did this should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”
The vandalism to which Baez refers occurred late this week when people defaced two Confederate monuments in Arizona.
One of the Confederate monuments, the Jefferson Davis Highway memorial near Gold Canyon, was covered in tar and feathers, according to the Arizona Daily Independent.
— M. H Arsalai (@ArsalaiH) August 18, 2017
Vandals covered a second monument, the Confederate memorial at Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza near the state capitol in Phoenix, with spray paint.
The suspect in spray-painting incident is described as a fortysomething white male with a gray beard. He was wearing a black hat, a black shirt and cargo shirts. He was riding a bicycle, according to Phoenix CBS affiliate KPHO.
Reginald Bolding, a Democratic member of the Arizona House of Representatives who is fighting for the removal of the monuments, has condemned the vandalism.
“This will not lead to the civil discourse and debate that we have been calling for,” Bolding said, according to the Daily Independent. “It is a short-term action that does not help the long-term goal of having these offensive monuments removed from state property.”
Prior to the spray-painting incident on Tuesday, a considerably more clever Phoenix resident, Rebecca Olsen McHood, hung a banner reading “2nd place” and “participant” on the Phoenix memorial, according to the Phoenix New Times.
Lol maybe these monuments are just participation trophies for losers.https://t.co/P5WeTmpEMr
Props to Rebecca Olsen McHood of Gilbert. pic.twitter.com/ebYzQk2HHl
— Goldwater’s Ghost (@BarryGsGhost) August 17, 2017
Ducey, Arizona’s governor, actually does not have the authority to remove the Confederate memorials unilaterally. State law requires him to defer to members of boards and commissions appointed by the governor’s office, notes KPHO.
The Territory of Arizona was briefly a part of the Confederate States of America and a Confederate military force fleetingly occupied Tucson while the U.S. Civil War raged.