REACTION: UT Austin's Confederate statue removal prompts mixed response

The University of Texas at Austin removed four Confederate statues from its campus on Sunday night.

The University of Texas at Austin removed four Confederate statues from its campus on Sunday night.

On Sunday night, The University of Texas at Austin removed four statues of Confederate figures from its campus following the events in Charlottesville, Virginia.

"These events make it clear, now more than ever, that Confederate monuments have become symbols of modern white supremacy and neo-Nazism," UT President Gregory L. Fenves wrote in a statement announcing the decision.

Three of the statues—those depicting Robert E. Lee, Albert Sidney Johnston, and John Reagan—will be added to the collection of the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, 2300 Red River St., Austin. The statue of James Hogg, governor of Texas from 1891 to 1895, may be relocated to another campus site.

In a statement, Austin Mayor Steve Adler said, "Putting these statues in a history museum appropriately puts this past where it belongs."

The response on social media has been mostly positive, with students, parents and residents applauding the university's decision to remove the statues overnight so as to minimize the risk of violent demonstrations, such as the ones seen on the University of Virginia's campus earlier this month.









However, not everyone commended the university's decision. Some believe the statues were long overdue for removal, while others criticized the university's tactics as covert and political.






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By Emma Freer

Emma Freer began covering Central Austin for Community Impact Newspaper in 2017. Her beat includes the Travis County Commissioners Court and local business news. She graduated from Columbia Journalism School in 2017.