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SPLC Action Fund Applauds House Vote Renaming Building Honoring Confederate Leader; Urges Senate to Follow Suit

CABO ROJO, Puerto Rico – On April 19, the Puerto Rico House of Representatives passed Joint Resolution 293, 46-5, enabling a building honoring Confederate leader J.L.M. Curry to be renamed. The bill now goes to the Senate of Puerto Rico.

The following statement is from Southern Poverty Law Center Action Fund Chief of Staff and Culture Lecia Brooks:

“The SPLC Action Fund applauds the Puerto Rico House of Representatives for taking the first step toward replacing the name of a slave owner with that of a former slave, María Cívico.

“As someone who fought for secession and slavery prior to the Civil War, J.L.M. Curry’s allegiance was to the Confederacy as a soldier and political leader. Yet in 1903 his name managed to get placed on a building, despite the fact that Curry had no known ties to Puerto Rico that would warrant such a tribute.

“Uplifting the names and likenesses of men who fought and died to preserve slavery for personal gain only serves as a further reminder of the oppression, racial hate, and inequality our country still needs to overcome.

“We urge quick passage of this by the Senate of Puerto Rico. Passing this joint resolution without delay would be a wonderful way to close out a month that historically has been used to celebrate and promote the revisionist history of the Confederacy.”