The statue was erected during “a period of rampant segregation, inequality, and oppressive Jim Crow laws,” the mayor said in a statement.
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The Capitol Guard statue at MacArthur Park in Little Rock was removed “for repair” Thursday after an unknown chemical was used to vandalize the confederate monument, causing discoloration, according to a MacArthur Park spokesperson.
However, Little Rock Mayor Frank Scott Jr. announced Thursday evening that the Capitol Guard statue would be permanently removed from the grounds, following in the footsteps of institutions across the country who are rethinking confederate-era monuments.
“As we have seen over the last several years, and now during this present unrest over the killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and most recently Rayshard Brooks, diverse communities in Little Rock and around the nation have sounded the alarm about the offensive nature of celebrating the Confederacy in public spaces,” the mayor said in the statement.
Scott said he didn’t know who vandalized the statue, but that it appeared to be gallons of varnish that were thrown on it.
You can read the rest of his statement below.
“The statue that was removed from MacArthur Park did not provide the full context of the tumultuous time period, consequences of the war nor the legacy of the soldiers’ actions.
The Capital Guards were memorialized without concern for those in our community who have suffered grave injustices and whose ancestors were viewed as less than human so that they could be subjugated to terror and forced to provide free labor.
“Our parks belong to every resident of Little Rock, who support them with their tax dollars. It is our intent to ensure our parks are inclusive and welcoming for all. This statue was divisive and in opposition to this administration’s internal why—to unite Little Rock.
“The statue will be stored until it can be determined where it will be transported. The base is covered and will also be removed soon. The City will work with the Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage, and Tourism to find a suitable place for the statue to be viewed in a comprehensive historical context.”