The online petition to remove a monument believed to promote a racist part of Fort Bend County history was brought up at Monday’s Richmond city council meeting.
Richmond resident Samantha Rodgers spoke to the Richmond City Council on Monday asking that the monument outside City Hall that honors people from the Jaybird-Woodpecker War should be removed.
Rodgers, who is the wife of Jacquizz Rodgers, the star running back that led Lamar Consolidated High School to a state football title in 2007, started an online petition one week ago after doing some research into the history of Fort Bend County, and the monument.
“I’ll be going to every council meeting,” she said. “I hope (the city council) will listen to the community and make the right decisions.”
Rodgers told The Herald that she started the petition on Change.org after finding out the history of the Jaybird-Woodpecker War, when an all-white group of Democrats called Jaybirds ousted a group of Republicans and
The Jaybirds would establish “whites-only” primaries and controlled Fort Bend County politics for over 70 years until the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against the primary in 1953.
“(The monument) is glorifying one side that promotes racism and white supremacy,” Rodgers said. “I don’t believe the city should have something there that says these are your heroes.”
As of Monday afternoon, Rodgers’ petition has reached over 450 signatures.
Rodgers is originally from Oregon, but moved with her husband to his hometown.
She also said she is working on discovering possible cases involving police brutality in Fort Bend County, especially in the Richmond and Rosenberg areas.
There is a second petition to remove the monument that was started by Taral Patel, which has over 350 signatures after it was started on Sunday. Patel, who is the chief of staff to County Judge KP George, said that he is starting the petition on his own behalf.
Rodgers is confused on why Patel started another petition when she had hers posted first.
“It makes us look divided and not unified,” she said.