The protests and riots we’ve witnessed the past few weeks have resulted in a number of historical statues being torn down. There doesn’t seem to be much of a standard for what statues are offensive. Statues of Christopher Columbus and Confederate generals have been defaced, destroyed and torn down, as have statues of abolitionists. A statue of Abraham Lincoln is actually being considered for removal in Boston, Massachusetts.
The apparent lack of consistency with which these statues and memorials have been targeted has many asking “What’s next?”
But perhaps the better question is “Why not this?”
These protestors think their efforts to tear down historical statues in the name of social justice is noble, but in reality, they reek of hypocrisy because of the statues that have so far avoided their path of destruction.
Here are seven statues that the left ought to tear down if they don’t want to be hypocrites.
1. Che Guevara’s statue in Central Park
Sure, you’ve seen his likeness on t-shirts on the privileged youth of America, but did you know that there’s a statue of Che Guevara in Central Park? Allegedly, this statue is actually depicting a street performer portraying the mass murderer, but I’m personally skeptical of this explanation. Aside from the fact that Che Guevara was a racist and a mass murderer who put homosexuals in labor camps, Guevara literally wanted to bomb New York City with nuclear missiles. “If the missiles had remained (in Cuba), we would have used them against the very heart of the U.S., including New York City,” Guevara wrote in November 1962, in the aftermath of the Cuban Missile Crisis. “The victory of socialism is well worth millions of atomic victims,” he added.
2. Margaret Sanger’s bronze bust at the Smithsonian
Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, might be the fairy godmother of the modern abortion movement, but her affiliation with the Ku Klux Klan, her support for the Nazis’ forced sterilization programs, and the racist motivations behind her abortion agenda should disqualify her from being revered by anybody. Yet, a bronze bust of Sanger remains on display at the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. But don’t expect the statue to be taken down soon, as a past attempt by African American pastors to have the bust removed was denied. Sanger is the polar opposite of what black lives matter stands for.
3. Harvey Milk’s bust at San Francisco City Hall
Harvey Milk is a gay rights icon and one of the first openly gay elected officials in this country, but what the radical left doesn’t want you to know is that he was a sexual predator who liked to have sex with underage boys. Milk had a “relationship” with a 16-year-old runaway who had looked to Milk as a father figure. Milk’s biographer, Randy Shilts, bizarrely wrote of many of his encounters with teenagers as though there was nothing wrong with them: “Harvey always had a penchant for young waifs with substance abuse problems.”
Yet, he has a memorial bust standing in San Francisco’s city hall. Figure that out.
4. The Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial in D.C.
Another man whose mythical status has concealed the grim details of his presidency is Franklin Delano Roosevelt. His legacy somehow manages to remain unblemished in the eyes of the Democratic Party, despite his signing of Executive Order 9066, which resulted in the unconstitutional incarceration of Japanese, German, and Italian Americans into internment camps. The Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial was dedicated by President Clinton in 1997, and features a bronze statue of FDR. It seems way past time to take down the statue and repurpose this memorial.
5. Barack Obama’s statue in Puerto Rico
As celebrated as Barack Obama is by the left, Obama was a notorious race-baiting demagogue who relied on racial and class-based rhetoric to justify most of his actions, and whose presidency was horrible for minorities.
By the time his presidency was over, an overwhelming majority of Americans believed that race relations got worse after his election. Black Americans were hit hard by the recession that defined the early months of his first term, but were mostly left behind in the economic recovery that followed. In 2012, there were more young black Americans living in poverty than before his election. Yet, that same year, a statue was erected in Puerto Rico in his honor.
As the first African American president, Barack Obama will likely always be seen as a symbol of progress for African Americans. In the aftermath of this election, there was a mad rush by schools to rename themselves after the first black president, and there’s since been a slew of roads and highways renamed to honor him. Obama’s legacy has been defined by the myth that he was a great uniter who saved our country from another Great Depression and led us down the path to peace and prosperity, but sadly, the real man doesn’t even come close to the myth. In fact, polls show voters believe Trump has done more good for black Americans than Obama did.
Then of course there’s the fact that Obama’s presidency was plagued by over thirty scandals—many of which would have seen another president impeached.
6. J. William Fulbright’s statue at the University of Arkansas
William Fulbright was a longtime U.S. senator whose name and likeness are practically synonymous with the University of Arkansas. A 7-foot tall statue on a huge granite base stands like a small tower at the university’s Old Main courtyard. Fulbright was a segregationist who signed the Southern Manifesto in opposition to the Supreme Court’s ruling in Brown v. Board of Education in 1954. He participated in the southern Democrats’ filibuster of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and voted against the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
What’s his statue still doing there?
7. Robert Byrd’s statue in the U.S. Capitol
The late Democratic Senator from West Virginia was an “exalted cyclops” in the Ku Klux Klan, yet remains a celebrated figure in the Democratic Party. Even after he allegedly renounced the Klan, he, like Fulbright, filibustered the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and voted against the confirmations of African American Supreme Court justices Thurgood Marshall and Clarence Thomas.
Nancy Pelosi made a big thing out of removing the paintings of three Democrat Confederate House Speakers, but a bronze statue of Robert Byrd still stands at the U.S. Capitol for some reason. In addition to the statue, there are many buildings, roads, and bridges named after the former Klansman.
Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis