Public reacts to removal plans of Downtown Lafayette’s Confederate statue

Lafayette Parish

LAFAYETTE, La (KLFY) — The statue of Confederate General Alfred Mouton has held its place of prominence in the heart of downtown Lafayette for nearly 100 years, but finally, its legacy is ending.

The Confederate statue that’s caused decades of public outcry and dozens of protests will be gone by August.

This comes after the United Daughters of the Confederacy, or UDC, signed an agreement with the city of Lafayette Friday morning.

The UDC agreed to find another home for the statue and arrange to have it moved there.

In return, the city of Lafayette agreed to pay up to $25,000 to make those arrangements happen.

For years the local activist group, Move the Mindset, has been pushing for the removal of this statue, a statue they call a Jim Crow atrocity.

“As a young person in the 1950, I can recall coming to this building behind us, which was the city hall, and I can remember asking my mother, ‘Who is this man?’ And my mother’s reply was always, ‘He was a bad man. Let’s go home,'” President of Move the Mindset, Fred Prejean, recalled. 

Friday afternoon Prejean and other members of Move the Mindset met in downtown Lafayette where the statue stands to celebrate the victory.

“God dang it, this is Acadiana, right? We always come together no matter what. There are still some people who are outliers and still stuck in that historical trench, but we pray that we can all one day be together, despite any differences that we have. We don’t have time for that. We are in the middle of a global pandemic. This is petty. This is petty to say that someone is better than someone else because of the color of their skin,” Move the Mindset member Alex Johnson said. 

“That’s what this day is about, being open to change and love and unconditional love,” Johnson added. 

Under the agreement with the city, the United Daughters of the Confederacy must find a place to rehome the statue and arrange to have it moved there in the next 45 days. 

If the UDC does not provide the city with this information, the city can dispose of the statue in any way they see fit. 

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