AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - A rally turned riot in Charlotesville, VA, a few weeks ago has led to controversy surrounding confederate monuments across the country, and one of those monuments is right here in Amarillo.
"It's been standing for 86 years, let's leave the monument alone," said President of the Freedom Riders James Roberts. "The guy, William himself, he was actually a U.S veteran prior to the Civil War. He was a U.S. veteran too. He became a Justice of the Peace, also he was in Congress."
However, not everyone in Amarillo is of the same opinion. Jerri Glover with Indivisible Amarillo agrees that the statue is a part of history, but he believes that it should be relocated.
"Out of the respect to the people that live in this community and live in this neighborhood," said Glover. "That thing needs to reside somewhere it can still be a part of history, but the people that are most adversely affected by it aren't in its shadow every day."
Both the Freedom Riders and Indivisible Amarillo attended this evening's city council meeting to present their arguments.
"Amarillo has really stepped up in support of this," said Roberts. "We have a petition online, and I think it's around 5,200 signatures already. I have 100 signatures that I'll be bring with me that's hand signatures."
"Just to allow city council to understand we want to have this conversation and we're willing to go through the legal steps, the required steps, to come up with a petition that allows us to have this conversation in a legal and peaceful manner," said Glover.
Despite their disagreements, both sides agree that the hatred displayed in Charlottesville was wrong.
"Yeah both sides that's wrong. I mean I see people, patriots standing up trying to protect and that's what it should be," said Roberts. "We all bleed one color, and it shouldn't be a racial division in our country."
"To watch the anger and the hate from people that came to protest in Charlottesville was difficult to watch regardless of what side you're on," said Glover.