DECATUR, Ga. — A memorial honoring Congressman John Lewis will reportedly be erected outside a Georgia courthouse where a Confederate statue once stood.
The memorial for Lewis will stand where a monument from the United Daughters of the Confederacy was located before it was removed over the summer, when protesters advocated for racist figures to be taken down.
— tyler, the reporter (@ByTylerEstep) June 19, 2020
Under Georgia law, no publicly owned monument honoring Confederate soldiers shall be relocated, removed or altered. However, WAGA reports that a judge made an exception, saying it was an appropriate move to “abate a public nuisance and protect the obelisk.”
According to The Champion, the resolution calling for the Lewis memorial calls the area “unique,” because it sits both in the congressional district the civil rights icon represented for over 33 years and is in the city of Decatur, the county seat of DeKalb County.
Lewis died in July at the age of 80. Along with serving as a Democrat in the U.S. House of Representatives, he was also one of the “Big Six” leaders of group of the civil rights movement of the 1960s. He spoke at the March on Washington and led protesters across the Edmund Pettus Bridge to protest racial discrimination on “Bloody Sunday.”
It’s unclear at this time what the monument of Lewis will look like, but some organizers have suggested it portray him as a young man, because the youth played such a large role in getting the Confederate statue taken down.