Durham commission chair says toppled Confederate monument now has bigger meaning

Wendy Jacobs

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) – Durham County Commissioner Chairwoman Wendy Jacobs had no idea the Confederate statue in front of her office at the old Durham County courthouse was coming down.

She says she walked by it for years, not paying much attention to it.

But, when it happened, it shocked her.

On August 14, demonstrators pulled down the Confederate monument resulting the arrest of eight protesters.

“Just the fact that it was able to be literally toppled over that easily, that quickly, was a surprise,” said Jacobs.

On Friday, there’s just a base.

The monument Jacobs once ignored now has a bigger meaning.

“It really represents that we have a lot of work to do,” she said. “There’s still so much really that lays before us.”

Jacobs is ready to focus on the next steps.

“We really need to go through the process of truth and reconciliation here in our community,” she said.

She says those discussions are next.

She hopes Durham follows in the footsteps of other cities in the country.

“We see what’s happening all over the United States, is that local governments are removing them,” she said. “That’s the kind of thing that we need to discuss as a community.”

Jacobs says she wants to hear from neighbors about their thoughts on what should happen with the monument.

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