Psychologist explores passions for, against Confederate statues - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Psychologist explores passions for, against Confederate statues

(Source: KSLA News 12) (Source: KSLA News 12)
Todd Lobrano (Source: KSLA News 12) Todd Lobrano (Source: KSLA News 12)

The movement of Confederate monuments has stirred strong reactions in people for and against the efforts.

The responses are so passionate that they beg the question why?

"Well, these monuments are symbols of who or what they have identified with," said Todd Lobrano, a Shreveport psychologist.

Monuments draw strong reactions out of people for several reasons.

"They have kind of encapsulated the idea of being Southern … this culture, this Southern culture as part of their sense of self.

"And so any changes that are made to their sense of self is somehow admitting that there is something wrong with them."

Lobrano acknowledges that many people feel that sense of self is now under attack.

Early Thursday morning, the Jefferson Davis memorial in New Orleans was taken down. 

Thursday evening, a citizens advisory panel held the first of four hearings about the fate of the Confederate monument standing outside the Caddo Courthouse in downtown Shreveport.

It's a possibility Jeffrey Sadow said, that could be met with compromise.

"It doesn't have to be an either-or situation where we absolutely have to have it there or we absolutely don't."

Sadow, a political science professor at LSU-Shreveport, said there should be something to put the monument into context rather than take down the monument.

"To some extent, people protesting for or against the monument are kind of missing the point in that it's an opportunity to build a shared understanding that the entire community can agree has some kind of educational cultural value to it."

Lobrano said an obsession with any object, historic or not, is something that should be avoided.

"I think it's unhealthy to have that level of fixation or attachment on any one thing."

Moving these monuments does not change the past, he added.

And as long as people keep that in mind, Lobrano said, those memories will survive.

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