PHOENIX - The Confederate monument that stands at Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza, just outside the Arizona state Capitol, looked a little different than it usually does Tuesday evening.
In addition to its memorializing of Arizona Confederate soldiers and its erectors, the United Daughters of the Confederacy, the statue got a few new decorations.
At the top, a ribbon hung with the words, "You lost, get over it," and at the bottom, the monuments message "A nation that forgets its past has no future" had been covered with a "2nd Place," "Participant" banner.
Rebecca McHood isn't 100 percent sure where the idea for the decorations came from, maybe an internet meme or two, but said she had to do something after listening to President Trump's news conference from Trump Tower Tuesday.
"Somebody posted a little clip of Trump’s press conference and it was so appalling," McHood said. "I could not believe it. So I looked for the whole thing. I thought, I need to watch this in context. It was only worse, it was only worse watching it in context."
During the news conference, Trump was quoted as saying he thought there was "blame on both sides" but "you also had people that were very fine people on both sides."
"What about the alt-left that came charging at the, as you say, the alt right? Do they have any semblance of guilt?" Trump said.
McHood said she could not believe (she put an emphasis on believe) what he was saying.
"I could not believe that it took him so long to make a statement in the first place about Charlottesville and then I was just so appalled, I was so angry," she said.
And as someone, she said, who can't just sit around and be angry, McHood, who is in fact a Republican, felt like she needed to do something.
"I needed to speak up," she said. "The white supremacists, the Nazis, whoever they are, whatever they want to call themselves – they do not speak for me. I am for equality."
But McHood said she had no words, so instead, the Valley resident grabbed crafting supplies and got to work.
“I decided to make some banners," she said.
Afraid what the climate might be around the Capitol, McHood waited for her husband to get home to stay with the kids before venturing out to the monument. She picked up her Democratic friend along the way.
"This was a bipartisan effort,"she said.
When McHood arrived at the Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza, she said there was hardly anyone there despite a DACA rally happening nearby. There was, however, an officer watching the monument.
"I thought 'Oh no!' we might just have to do a banner drop, put it on and run,” she said.
The officer eventually told McHood she couldn't attached anything to the statue, so she laid the banners down, took some pictures and headed to join the DACA rally.
“We were walking over and I kept kind of glancing back because I wasn’t sure if the officer was going to take the banners off and throw them in the trash," she said.
But the officer never did and when she left the rally, McHood said the banners were still there. She posted the photos on Facebook, which by Wednesday morning, had garnered a lot of attention with many commenters praising her actions. One person even called it their "very favorite thing on the internet today."
As someone who is no stranger to acts of activism, having spent all summer collecting signatures against the school voucher program, it doesn't appear this is where the conversation will stop for McHood.
“I do not condone violence or vandalism," McHood said. "But I do call on Gov. Ducey to take those monuments down."
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