Madison County scraps proclamation for Confederate History Month

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MADISONVILLE, Tex. (KBTX) - Madison County Commissioners scrapped a proclamation that would designate April as Confederate History and Heritage month.

The controversy over the proclamation started last week after people in the community found out about the agenda item. That proclamation has been made many times before, but there was push back this time.

"We don’t have an African American community or a Hispanic community. We don’t have a white community or an Asian community," said Madison County Judge Tony Leago. "We have a Madison County community and my goal is to bring prosperity and everything that goes with it to this county."

Judge Leago said the proclamation has been brought up almost every year since 2011 without any issue. This year, however, there was strong opposition.

"It hit Facebook," said Leago.

"It just blew up in the county and I begun to do some questioning and I found out there was a lot of concern over it," the judge said.

KBTX talked to the Madison County property owner over the phone who made and then withdrew the proclamation request. The Sons of Confederate Veterans member said he didn't want to upset residents as times have changed. The request was withdrawn before Monday morning's meeting started. Madison County residents are divided over recognizing Texas' history.

"Fortunately, the judge had decided to withdraw that proclamation," said Midway resident Linda Sueing-Jackson. She was happy to hear the proclamation won't happen.

"The consensus of the overall minority community was very much opposed to it," she said.

Other residents believed the court should be working on more important issues.

"I really think there's a lot more important things for [the county] to be doing than that. I think the whole issue is silly. It's past history and I don't think it does any good for anyone to stir it up," said Madisonville resident John Davidson.

"I think it would have continued the division of hatred in Madison County and we want to be a county that looks forward," added Sueing-Jackson.

Other Texas counties including Brazos County have approved a similar proclamation. In 2016, KBTX reported the controversy surrounding a proclamation in Bryan.