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Statue Debate

  • Statue DebateRethinking heroes

Should we be pulling down statues of the disgraced or discredited?

Britney Spears fans in Louisiana have called on state officials to replace Confederate monuments with statues of the pop star.

The deadly white nationalist Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia earlier this month (Aug17) has prompted officials around the U.S. to consider removing monuments celebrating leaders of the pro-slavery Confederacy, who were defeated in America's Civil War in 1865.

As politicians mull over what to replace the statues with, fans in Louisiana have suggested Britney's likeness should be caste in metal and placed in public places throughout the state's most popular city, New Orleans.

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As of press time nearly 1,500 people had signed their names to a new Change.org petition, entitled 'Replace Confederate statues in New Orleans with statues of Louisiana hero Britney Spears'.

"Before becoming one of the world's most important and influential pop legends, Britney Spears was living life in a small southern town by the name of Kentwood, Louisiana," the petition reads. "Not only has Britney proven her talent, but she's proven her strength of character by not only overcoming (a) highly publicized mental breakdown (in 2007), but by continuously working towards improving herself. She's an inspiration to millions."

Meanwhile, the author of another Change.org petition has suggested Confederate monuments in Portsmouth, Virginia should make way for statues honouring local heroine Missy Elliott.

"Who better to encapsulate the culture and spirit of the city enshrined in a new monument than Grammy Award winning rapper, dancer, and record producer Missy 'Misdemeanor' Elliott?" Nathan Coflin wrote.

His petition hit 10,000 names in just four days last week.

"Hailing from humble beginnings as the only child of a power company dispatcher and a welder at Portsmouth’s lauded naval shipyard, she rose to become a platinum recording artist with over 30 million albums sold," he added. "All this without even once owning a slave.

"Let us come together in getting City Council to erect this statue in honor of Missy Elliott and all those in the great City of Portsmouth who work it each and every day."

Coflin plans to hand the petition over to Portsmouth Mayor John L Rowe for consideration.