"We are removing the monument at the request of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, Long Beach branch [who maintain the monument]", Hollywood Forever president and co-owner Tyler Cassity told LAist on Tuesday.
The report claims that several hundred activists requested the monument - which stands in the Confederate portion of the famous cemetery with over 30 Confederate veterans and their families' graves - be removed following the deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville over the weekend. The cemetery director reached out to them, according to the Times, and they agreed to take the monument down.
"I was afraid to leave it overnight", said a spokeswoman for the organization, who asked that her name not be used for fear of reprisal.
"I do not believe in slavery - no sane human would believe in that today", she said. The email stated that "you can not be against General Lee and be for General Washington, there is literally no difference between the two men", since "both rebelled against the ruling government" and "both saved America", and said the Black Lives Matter movement "has been totally infiltrated by terrorist groups". "We should all come together and become one under the United States of America".
The statement goes on to say: "During this troubling time when Neo-Nazis and white power groups are escalating their racist activity, Seattle needs to join with cities and towns across the country who are sending a strong message by taking these archaic symbols down". A petition to remove the monument gathered over 1,200 signatures. They've stopped doing reenactments, as well as bringing guns and Confederate flags.
"We received the most calls about people wanting the monument taken down".