A petition to have a Confederate monument in Florida replaced with a statue of a beloved manatee that passed away Sunday has already received thousands of signatures.
Snooty the manatee was the longest-living manatee in captivity, and had turned 69 just days before his death at the South Florida Museum in Bradenton. Museum officials said he became trapped in a maintenance tube and drowned.
The petition, started by Sarasota resident Anthony Pusateri, is seeking to have a statue of Snooty replace the Confederate monument outside the Manatee County Courthouse.
"To honor Snooty's legacy as a positive icon in Bradenton, I propose that the negative symbol of racism and oppression that is the Confederate monument be relocated and replaced with a statue of Snooty the Manatee," the Change.org petition reads. "By doing so, the Confederate monument could possibly be moved to a museum (or other more appropriate location) out of everyday public eye and a more positive symbol then take its place."
The petition, which had more than 4,000 signatures Tuesday morning, will be delivered to the Manatee County Commission.