SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Days after it was vandalized, the Confederate monument in Forsyth Park still has the pro-Palestine messaging on it.
The spray paint reads, “FREE GAZA”, “FREE PALESTINE ” and “NO CHRISTMAS IN BETHLEHEM.”
Savannah Police tells us it happened early Sunday morning in the dark.
“I feel like the kind of people that did this graffiti are the kind of people that make us feel like we have to hire armed guards to protect us,” said Rebecca Howard, visiting from Florida. She says her synagogue back home has ramped up security after Hamas’ attacks began.
“I am very upset about the death and destruction in Gaza but I am Jewish, and I think that a lot of the sympathy for Hamas and some of the Palestinians, certainly not all of them, is misguided and misunderstood,” said Howard.
She says she can appreciate a protest but wishes they had found another more peaceful way.
“There is nothing radical about aspects like this when hundreds of people are dying over there,” said Kathryn Bauer, an Armstrong student. “There’s so much evidence of that with the videos coming out and just to be offended by something like this? Come on.”
Bauer appreciates graffiti, saying her studies give her a different perspective.
“Art is all about talking about your opinion and getting it out there, especially when there’s truth and things that need to be said,” said Bauer. “I think that graffiti is something that needs to happen.”
All four sides of the monument were defaced, something Bauer says she’s noticed happening pretty often.
“Especially with the holidays, we’re kind of putting it to the side and having something like this where people are walking by it, people are seeing it on a monument like this, it’s really important,” said Bauer.
Police have not been able to catch the suspect, but they will be facing vandalism charges.
The city of Savannah’s Park and Tree Department handles graffiti removal. Officials are aware of the issue and a work order has been placed.