Mayor, Hall of Fame NFL Coach Donate Own Money to Remove Confederate Statue
Tampa Mayor and Hall of Fame Coach Tony Dungy Donate Thousands To Remove Confederate Statue
The debate over removing Confederate statutes and monuments honoring the losing side of the Civil War continues to rage across the country. In some cases, the tricky aspect of removing these statues lies in laws that govern what can be done with them. But in one case, the opportunity to remove a statue has been put in the hands of anyone interested financing the work. And given the chance, one mayor and an NFL Hall of Fame coach are helping out.
Hillsborough Country commissioners in Tampa, Florida have given the public 30 days to come up with enough money to cover half the cost of removing a statue in the downtown area. If the $140,000 needed is raised, the statue will be moved to a small family cemetery. And the money appears to flowing in from many folks wanting to see the move.
The mayor of Tampa, Democrat Bob Buckhorn, announced in a Facebook post he would be donating $1,000 of his own money to the effort. He briefly stated:
Not a City statue, but I have a moral obligation to my part. Now take it down.
Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach and 2016 NFL Hall of Famer Tony Dungy also chipped in to the effort. The Super Bowl XLI-winning coach posted on Twitter that he and his wife, Lauren, would be donating $5,000 to the cause and encouraged other Tampa sports teams to help.
Our County says private $$ must be raised to move Confederate statue. Lauren and I are in for $5K. We challenge Bucs Rays Lightning to help! pic.twitter.com/dGRd1BTFkp
— Tony Dungy (@TonyDungy) August 17, 2017
A GoFundMe page was set up to help raise the money. As of this writing (2:20 EST), the page has gone over $48,000 in donations. The Tampa Bay Times had reported the donations were around $27,000 just a few hours earlier in a sign of how fast the money is starting to flow. Clearly, when given the chance, the public is responding and doing so rather quickly.
It should be noted, these donations do not appear to count a separate $50,000 from a local business man supporting the move, also reported by the Tampa Bay Times. The effort seems even closer to its goal than the GoFundMe page would suggest. But more donations will obviously be needed.
The debate around removing Confederate statues has escalated to a new height over the past week. Republican Donald Trump tripled down on his equating of the opposing sides after a domestic terror attack in Charlottesville during an early morning Tweet storm today. Trump made the posts despite polls showing a majority of the public disagrees with his response to the tragedy.
Featured image via Jamie Squire/Getty Images Sport.
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