Public debate held over Confederate Memorial

Dozens of people crowd the square in Downtown Decatur, as the community was invited to share their thoughts on the Confederate memorial and whether it should stay or be removed.

"The people of DeKalb County and the people of Decatur are tired of seeing a white supremacist monument stand over a public square," said Sara Patenaude, a historian who helps represent one of the more than 2,000 people who have signed a local online petition to advocate for its removal and relocation into a museum. 

While most people at the event support the relocation of the memorial, others voiced concern over the removal of a public piece of art history.

"I'm a Southerner. I think we should take down the flags... I do think we should leave the monuments as a reminder of how far we have come from the past," said passerby Chad Samuels.

The property belongs to DeKalb County; officials have declined comment on the issue to FOX 5.

Local and state elected officials are examining how state law will allow or prevent public officials from modifying, removing or relocating any Confederate monuments in the Metro and statewide.

Supporters of the removal of the monument plan to lobby for their cause at public meetings for the City Council of Decatur and the Board of Commissioners of Dekalb County.