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Did You Think We Were Done Talking About Confederate Monuments?

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id you think we were done talking about Confederate monuments? We most certainly are not. We'll begin with commenter Codwina, who has some thoughts on the Durham monument that demonstrators pulled down last year and the judge who failed to convict them.

"The true problem," Codwina writes, "is the flagrant disregard for the vandalism of property and the law and the lack of the justice system in backing up law enforcement who handled the situation well. Instead of supporting the findings of law enforcement, it seems the judge is making excuses to support their poor behavior. If the protesters were truly concerned and would look around Durham and observe what is actually going on, they would realize that we don't need another problem, which they are creating, but we need positive solutions for the other problems we face as a city.

"If these protesters are truly concerned and want to fix things, they need to go to some of the Durham neighborhoods in need of help, especially the young people of all races, and serve as a positive role model by providing free tutorial services for those children who are below grade level in math and reading. Education is what is needed to put all on an equal footing, not just in Durham but in the nation as a whole. They could also help to serve as a part of community-watch programs to assist in helping law enforcement in the solving or prevention of some crimes rather than to vandalize a statue to make a statement. These positive behaviors would do more to help end racism and other issues that spring from it than the blatant destruction of property.

"The true crime here to me is that these so-called educated protesters are not addressing the many issues I mentioned, but instead they use their education and time to justify needless vandalism and then claim to be victims of a criminal justice system because it is holding them accountable for useless vandalism and breaking the law."

Tim Lattimore comments on our story about a hearing last week on whether the N.C. Historical Commission should remove Confederate statues from the Capitol grounds: "If you have read the North Carolina law, you will know that the commission would be in violation of the law if they move the monuments. The law allows for monuments on state property to be moved for eminent domain or if they are a hazard. These monuments do not qualify on either account. The law also states that if you move the monument, if must be moved to site of equal or greater prominence that the place from which it is removed. Where could they possibly be moved? Are we a nation of laws or mob rule? That is the question."

Donovan Verrill brings up the Sacramento shooting death of an unarmed black man whom police gunned down in his grandmother's backyard last week: "So, in today's news, white people are justifying the killing of Stephon Clark and others want to keep rebel monuments. No, we don't have a race problem in this country, not at all."

Moving on to lighter fare. Rabbi Jonathan Gerard writes in with a science lesson about Caitlin Sloan's recent story on the only century farm in Durham County owned by people of color.

"Douglas Daye is quoted as saying, 'I believe there will always be rocks in these fields. ... Sometimes I think rocks really grow on this place, just like weeds do,'" Gerard writes. "There is scientific proof for this related to why the bottom of a box of crackers or cereal always has smaller crumbs than the top—or a jar of pebbles, shaken, will cause the larger pebbles to rise. Actually, they don't. What happens is that, over time, gravity pulls pebbles, Cheerios, and popcorn down, filling the spaces between these objects. The smaller the item, the more likely it is to fit into the space below it. So it's not that the larger items rise; it's that the smaller ones drop, pushing the larger ones up. Hence in a garden or on a farm, the more one removes rocks, the more they continue to come to the surface. Just as Mr. Daye says, they seem to grow like weeds."

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