Al Sharpton and his civil rights group, the National Action Network, want the military to remove all reference of the Confederacy from its bases, saying it’s ‘unacceptable that the base’s main street is named General Lee Avenue.’
The Examiner reported:
If Al Sharpton and his National Action Network have their way, the military will remove all references to the Confederacy from its bases and rename posts that honor Confederate leaders. On Thursday, Kirsten John Foy, the northeast regional director for Sharpton’s group, held a press conference in front of Fort Hamilton in Brooklyn, New York, saying it’s “unacceptable” that the base’s main street is named “General Lee Avenue.”
“Fort Hamilton is the face of the US Army here in New York and the face of the US Army here in New York is General Robert E. Lee,” he said. “That is unacceptable as a New Yorker, as an American, and as a person of good conscience.”
Lee, the Business Insider said, “served at Fort Hamilton in the 19th century before he left the US Army.” Lee served as the post engineer from 1841 – 1846 and was responsible for turning the fort into a “substantial emplacement.” The street named after him is about a half-mile long.
But Foy apparently isn’t concerned with Lee’s history at the fort, and wants the military to erase any mention of the Confederacy. What Foy clearly fails to understand is that many of the Confederacy’s military leaders came from the U.S. and served with distinction.
“We will be presenting an official letter to the commander of this base and then sending it up the chain asking that they remove all the remnants of the Confederacy,” he said. “Taxpayer dollars are supporting a US military that honors the Confederacy.”
Foy isn’t the only one to demand the military engage in what some now see as a “Stalinist” purge of U.S. history. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, a Democrat who represents a congressional district adjacent to the base, also wants the street renamed.
“There is no good reason for a street to be named after an individual who led the Confederate Army in the fight to keep slavery and racial subjugation alive in America,” he said. “It is my hope that we will do the right thing and find an appropriate local hero for whom the street can be renamed.”
Ten Army bases are named after Confederate officers, including Fort Bragg, Fort Benning, Fort Gordon and Fort A.P. Hill. The Army has said it has no plans to rename any of the facilities.
“Every Army installation is named for a soldier who holds a place in our military history,” said spokesman Brigadier General Malcolm Frost. “Accordingly, these historic names represent individuals, not causes or ideologies. It should be noted that the naming occurred in the spirit of reconciliation, not division.”
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