Statue’s to celebrate the Confederacy ….
Statue’s to celebrate Christopher Columbus….
Statue’s that celebrate those who enslaved peoples….
Pulled own by crowds in the street at first….
And now being taken down by lawmakers and officials following critical protests ….
(Names of b buildings, parks and other things also)
History lessons get a new hard look …..
The boiling anger that exploded in the days after George Floydgasped his final breaths is now fueling a national movement to topple perceived symbols of racism and oppression in the United States, as protests over police brutality against African-Americans expand to include demands for a more honest accounting of American history.
In Richmond, Va., a statue of the Italian navigator and colonizer Christopher Columbus was spray-painted, set on fire and thrown into a lake.
And in Albuquerque, tensions over a statue of Juan de Oñate, a 16th-century colonial governor exiled from New Mexico over cruel treatment of Native Americans, erupted in street skirmishes and a blast of gunfire before the monument was removed on Tuesday.
Across the country, monuments criticized as symbols of historical oppression have been defaced and brought down at warp speed in recent days. The movement initially set its sights on Confederate symbols and examples of racism against African-Americans, but has since exploded into a broader cultural moment, forcing a reckoning over such issues as European colonization and the oppression of Native Americans.
In New Mexico, it has surfaced generations-old tensions among Indigenous, Hispanic and Anglo residents and brought 400 years of turbulent history bubbling to the surface.
“We’re at this inflection point,” said Keegan King, a member of Acoma Pueblo, which endured a massacre of 800 or more people directed by Oñate, the brutal Spanish conquistador and colonial governor. The Black Lives Matter movement, he said, had encouraged people to examine the history around them, and not all of it was merely written in books.
“These pieces of systemic racism took the form of monuments and statues and parks,” Mr. King said.
The debate over how to represent the uncomfortable parts of American history has been going on for decades, but the traction for knocking down monuments seen in recent days raises new questions about whether it will result in a fundamental shift in how history is taught to new generations…..
image….Credit…Adria Malcolm for The New York Times