Hi, folks -- As you may know, there's an effort underway to construct a statue of Revolutionary War figure Francis Marion in Marion Park, a small, multi-use park at E Street SE, between 4th and 6th.
Many neighbors who use the park daily are concerned about the statue proposal for the following reasons (and more):
1) It's a pet project of a gentleman from South Carolina who is imposing it on the neighborhood. (Read about the proposal from his perspective: http://www.swampfoxmemorial.org/
2) There's been a lack of opportunity for input from the community. Some neighbors feel that the lack of openness about the process for approving the statue is purposeful, to minimize community input and opposition.
2) Marion is a controversial character, to say the least. While he may be hailed as a Revolutionary War hero, he was also a slave owner and according to some sources, murdered Native Americans en masse and raped his slaves. Some neighbors don't think it's appropriate or desirable to commemorate such a figure with a statue, particularly when there are so many other Revolutionary War figures already commemorated in DC, and when Marion already has a park named after him. (More about Marion in this Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Marion
3) Concerns about the upkeep of the statue -- there is confusion about which agency would be responsible and how it would be paid for.
4) The park has been under construction twice in 5 or 6 years, and many neighbors do not want to see it under construction yet again. It's a space where members of the community relax, play catch, exercise their dogs, etc. -- all activities that are currently constrained because of the construction. (There is also a children's playground in a fenced-in area of the park.)
The information you provide in this form will be used ONLY to create a petition to the ANC, National Capital Planning Commission, and other relevant commissions stating neighbors' opposition to the statue proposal. For any other uses, we will email you first to obtain permission.
Thanks so much for your help. Any questions, please email me at mayorofthedogpark @ gmail.