RICHMOND, Va., Feb. 5 (UPI) -- The Virginia Senate has rejected an effort to have April designated Confederate History and Heritage Month.
A show-of-hands vote narrowly defeated the proposed resolution Wednesday after a heated, emotional debate during which black lawmakers branded it "offensive" and "repugnant," the Washington Times said.
"Confederate history is nothing more than exultation of one of the most shameful episodes in this country's history," said Sen. Henry L. Marsh, Dinwiddie County Democrat, who is black.
Sen. Charles R. Hawkins, a Campbell County Republican and author of the resolution, said it was meant to educate and not to offend, and the debate should not be focused on slavery.
The Senate earlier unanimously approved a bill that would protect Virginia's historic monuments, streets and bridges from being renamed, relocated or removed.