By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Thursday, August 20 the Confederate Heritage groups, Save Our South, announced that they have filed a lawsuit and restraining order against the city of Birmingham in order to thwart efforts by the Birmingham Parks and Recreation Board to remove the 110 year old Confederate Memorial in Linn Park.
The City of Birmingham, the Birmingham Parks and Recreation Board, and the Birmingham City Council are named in the lawsuit and restraining order.
Save Our South is represented in this case by Cullman attorney Melvin Hastings, who filed a lawsuit in July against Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (R) demanding the flags be restored at the Confederate Memorial on the state capitol grounds.
Hastings said in a statement, “We are taking the first steps to protect history for future generations here in Birmingham. Since we can’t reason with the City, the only way to represent the people of Birmingham and Alabama is in a court of law.”
Hastings said that the memorial was gifted to the state and thus is state property and the Parks and recreation board has no authority to remove the memorial. Hastings also cited other statutes defeating memorials that he believes would be violated by the removal. Hastings told reporters that they filed the lawsuit after hearing rumors that the City planned to remove the monument in secret without warning.
Save Our South spokesperson Deanna Frankowski said, “We asked for an injunction to stop them from removing any monument from Linn Park.” “We are doing this to protect the citizens of Birmingham with regard to history and also with regard to veterans rights. With regard to the Confederate Memorial in particular, there were over 65,000 Confederate that fought along other Civil War soldiers so we are fighting for their rights as well as well as protecting Confederate right and civil rights because we believe that if you start tearing down monuments with no regard to history or the descendants of veterans, then where does it stop?”
The CEO of Touch Communications and the President of the Outcast Voters League Frank Matthews wants the monument moved, Matthews said in a statement on Facebook, “We’re not saying desecrate it. We’re not saying tear it down. We’re saying remove it. Move it down to mile marker 141 where that big old 100-foot Confederate flag is,Why do you want it in the heart of Birmingham?”
Save Our South is a not-for-profit organization of multicultural members who believe in educating others about Southern history and culture. Their goal is to preserve and protect history for future generations. The organization was founded in Birmingham, AL, which is home to the Civil Rights movement and the Civil Rights Museum. Save our South believes in Southern Heritage, Hope, and Unity according to their website, SaveOurSouth.org.
Frankowski said that the group is still seeking information into the death of author and Confederate activist Anthony Hervey who was killed in a single car accident the day after he attended a rally with Save Our South to save the Linn Park memorials. Crash survivor Arlene Barnham has told police that they were run of the road by a car load of Black males.