Written by Dottie Smith Mann’s daughter, Susan Mann, when addressing the Catawba county council in NC.  March, 2021


Statues stand all over the South
Stone and Metal and Concrete reminders
Of a war that was fought, and lost
Of a Confederacy that lived a mere 4 years
But which still casts a shadow on our Nation.

They call it the War of Northern Aggression
And pretend that Slavery wasn’t the reason.
And that slavery wasn’t that bad,
And besides, it was all so long ago

But it was that bad, and worse.
Rape, and beatings, and starvation.
Torture, and murder,
Children sold away from family
People treated as animals, owned
Just another part of the economy

(If you have any imagination, any sense
Of empathy for others, please use it now)

And so the War was fought, and many died.
Brother fought brother, families torn apart
A country divided
A war that laid a country to waste

But finally it was over
And General Lee, himself, spoke out
I think it wiser, he said
Not to keep open the sores of war

He wanted no statues
And no statues went up.

And then a wondrous thing happened!
In Carolina, Black and white came together
As a political power, to do good for all
They rewrote the Constitution
Helped the children, and the widows, and the sick
And expanded voting rights

               Susan Mann

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