(WKRG) — Alabama Senator Doug Jones says all people should be offended by monuments to the Confederacy but says decisions to remove the monuments should be made at the local level.
Alabama passed a law in 2017, prohibiting the removal of any monument that has stood for 40 years or more.
“Every community should decide this for themselves,” Jones said in an interview Tuesday with WKRG News 5. “I don’t think it’s the state or the federal government’s prerogative. I think there will be communities that would like to keep those monuments up, and communities that want to take them down.”
Jones, however, says people need to listen to what protesters are saying about the Confederate memorials and consider the anguish the monuments inflict on a large portion of the community.
“This is not just a matter of heritage, because Alabama once belonged to the Confederacy,” he said. “It’s what that Confederacy stood for in regard to trying to keep slavery in this country. And that should be offensive, not just to African-Americans, but to all Americans.”
Jones says removed Confederate monuments shouldn’t necessarily be destroyed.
“I think there can be historical places where they can be erected and observed.”