Take down the Vance Monument
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We call on Asheville City Council to remove the Vance Monument from Pack Square.
The Vance Monument honors Zebulon Vance, a slaveholder who fought for the Confederacy. Vance was a Colonel in the Confederate Army and led his regiment at the Battle of New Bern where 90 US troops were killed.
The Constitution defines treason: "Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort.”
And that is exactly what Vance did: levy war against the United States to retain his own slaves and the whole institution of slavery.
Vance was governor during the Civil War. A major part of his job as governor was to furnish troops to the Confederacy, and he worked tirelessly to do that. A history of the Civil War says, "To him it is due, largely, that the bodies of more North Carolina dead strewed the battlefields of the country than those of any other State…"
In 1879 Vance was elected to the US Senate where he served until his death in 1894. During those years frequent public lynchings terrorized the African American population and the Southern states, including North Carolina, took no action against those responsible. When bills were introduced to make lynching a federal crime, Vance voted against every one and none became law.
Vance never gave up his racist views and it is an insult to all of us to give this slaveholder a place of honor on our public square.
It is time to remove the Zebulon Vance Monument from Pack Square.
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