Alabama county may cover up murals showing slave scenes

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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — As officials across the South wrestle with what to do about public monuments that reflect a racist heritage, an Alabama county wants to cover up two courthouse murals that some call offensive.

The Jefferson County Commission on Thursday endorse a recommendation to put retractable curtains over murals in the Birmingham courthouse that depict black people picking cotton and doing other manual labor against a backdrop of white people in more prominent positions. The commission didn’t take a formal vote, and it’s not clear when that will happen.

The murals “Old South” and “New South” were installed in the 1930s. Those calling for their removal have said they romanticize slavery. Historians have said they have historical value.

The discussion comes amid renewed scrutiny of Confederate flags and other Old South symbols.

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