I read the article at thekansan.com: "Confederate monuments removed overnight in Baltimore."

It is obvious a trend is sadly sweeping the nation. I am a Freemason, myself, for over 35 years in the Scottish Rite and having 34 years as a member of the York Rite of Freemasonry — even I think that the statue of former Confederate General Albert Pike does not belong on Judiciary Square in Washington, D.C.

Although Pike was the top national officer in only one branch of the Masonic Order (The Southern Jurisdiction of the Scottish Rite composed of 35 mainly southern U.S. States and D.C). Pike is best remembered for being a local presiding-officer of all four York Rite Bodies in Little Rock Arkansas, that of the basic Masonic Lodge; the Royal Arch Masons, the Cryptic Masons, and his being the first presiding officer of Hugh de Payens Masonic Knights Templar in Little Rock, Arkansas. At Little Rock, there is a nearly city-block-long building named "The Albert Pike Memorial Masonic Center." I've been inside it. The statue of Pike in Washington, D.C., sits on Federal Land maintained by the National Park Service in a predominantly African-American area. Although erected in 1898 by an Act of Congress, the statue of Pike no longer fits cultural norms in 2017.

I am a history buff. I admire "the good aspects" of Pike's life; but I frown on the figurative warts on his biography. Pike's troops (mainly American Indians) were accused of "taking scalps" and Albert Pike was even accused by fellow Confederates of "being either insane or untrue to the South" and Albert Pike was briefly imprisoned in Warren, Texas, in 1862, long before the end of the war.

After the civil war, Pike fled to Canada as a fugitive until a presidential pardon was secured. I can fully understand why tempers would flare at the statue of an ex-Confederate General being in that neighborhood of Wash DC. It simply doesn't belong  there anymore — I would respectfully wish that Masonic Leaders from little Rock move the statue to be placed on the interior of the building at Little Rock.

An alternative would be the inside the auditorium of the Wichita Scottish Rite Center where I became a member in the year 1982. It would probably accommodate the statue of Pike and separately the accessory statue, holding the fraternal banner. The concrete base could be left outside.

— James A. Marples, Esbon.