Monuments to politicians, merchants and patrons who are associated with the history of slavery and colonialism became the main target of the protests of the movement Black Lives Matter around the world. In Britain, Belgium and the United States authorities at the request of the activists dismantle them. About it writes BBC.
Journalists understand why the historical figures which seems habitual and familiar, aroused the wrath of the fighters against racism.
USA: General Lee, Christopher Columbus, Roosevelt
In the US Black Lives Matter activists consistently struggle with monuments to generals and soldiers of the Confederacy of the southern States of the Civil war era of 1860-ies.
In 2017, after clashes in Charlottesville that has spread to several U.S. cities, the monuments to the confederates was declared a real war. According to its results some of the city decided to dismantle all generally relevant to the history of the southern States memorials.
In 2020 the protests caused by the death of George Floyd, the goal of the activists were the same shape.
The target of the protesters has again become a monument to General Robert E. Lee, commander Confederate army, and slave owner. In 2017, the protesters, among other things, the smashed face of the statue in North Carolina.
This year, activists have achieved the dismantling of the 12-ton monument to Lee in Virginia, established in 1890. “We’re not going to preach a false version of history”, — said the Governor of the state, announcing the decision to dismantle the monument.
The statues of confederates — as specific historical figures and memorials to the fallen soldiers after protests dismantled in many US cities.
In early June, was dismantled and taken away on the truck the fallen soldiers memorial in Jacksonville, Florida, and the mayor a Republican lenny Kerry has called to remove all all associated with the Confederation of monuments.
Democrats in the U.S. Senate are preparing to introduce a bill on the dismantling of monuments to confederates in Congress. It needs to go to the lower chamber.
In parallel with the authorized dismantling protesters in some parts of the U.S. continue to destroy monuments.
In Richmond (VA), in early June, painted, burned and thrown into the river the statue of Christopher Columbus standing on the embankment. Another statue of Columbus was beheaded at the same time in Boston. Another Columbus monument fell into the hands of fighters for historical justice in the urban landscape on Saturday, July 4 — this time in Baltimore.
Local newspaper the Baltimore Sun published a video of activists using the ropes knocked standing in the district of Little Venice, the statue of the discoverer of America and drove it to the Bay.
The Genoese traveler who discovered during your navigation in 1492, the “New world”, considered by many to be responsible for the ensuing centuries-long genocide of the indigenous population of America.
In late June, the monuments to Columbus have been dismantled by the authorities in Sacramento and San Francisco- as said power of the latter, “because he doesn’t deserve worship”.
The US President Donald trump, speaking on the occasion of independence Day, July 4, mentioned in his speech of Christopher Columbus.
“Together we will fight for the American dream, and we will protect, save, and save the American way of life, which starts in 1492 when Columbus discovered America,” the President said.
“We are now trying to overcome the radical left, anarchists, agitators, vandals, and those who in many cases has no idea what he was doing, he added. — We will never allow an angry crowd to destroy our monuments and destroy our history, to expose the indoctrination of our children.”
In June, Donald trump signed a decree according to which the vandals, defacing the monuments, could face up to 10 years in prison. He also ordered the creation of a “National Park of American heroes” and created a special Commission, which is mandated 60 days to develop a plan for the establishment and the place where it will be located.
In its list of “historically significant” Americans were the founding fathers of the nation George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, as well as the pioneer Davy Crockett, the preacher-Baptist, Billy Graham, Ronald Reagan, and two of the heroes of world war II — generals Douglas MacArthur and George Patton. Trump included in the list and non-Americans who “who made a significant historical contribution to the discovery, development and independence of the future United States,” so it’s possible there will be Christopher Columbus.
The American Museum of natural history in new York decided to dismantle the bronze monument to Theodore Roosevelt. As emphasized in the Museum, this decision is connected not with the personality 26 the President of the United States, and the compositional decision of the monument.
On the monument in question, Theodore Roosevelt, depicted on horseback, accompanied by foot Indian and a native of Africa. In the opinion of management of the Museum, the monument “clearly depicts the black and indigenous population of the US as a slave and racial inferiority.”
The decision to dismantle the monument was supported by new York mayor bill de Blasio and the great-grandson of 26th US President, Theodore Roosevelt IV, who said that the sculpture does not reflect the heritage of his great grandfather.
One of the founders of the Museum of natural history was the father of the 26th US President — Theodore Roosevelt senior. The Museum has several areas named after Theodore Roosevelt.
The decision to dismantle the monument did not support Donald trump. “Is silly. Don’t do this!” — trump wrote on Twitter.
Britain: public list Churchill and Cecil Rhodes
The death of the African-American George Floyd at the hands of a COP sparked mass protests in dozens of U.S. cities and in many countries of the world, and forced to think again about the appropriateness of those or other historical monuments.
British activists from the Black Lives Matter movement submitted a list of 60 sites located throughout the United Kingdom.
The aim of the project will Topple the Racists (“Get out of racist”) — to initiate a discussion about dismantling that “Britain finally admitted the truth about his past,” write the activists.
The list is open, and this sometimes leads to confusion. It featured, for example, five monuments to Robert the Saw, who was Prime Minister of Britain in the 1830s and 1840s, and was also the Minister of internal Affairs.
Peel developed nine principles of ethics for the police, which are still used for the training of British police.
Activists demanding the dismantling of the monument in Leeds, writing in the abstract, that Saws is considering a bill on the abolition of slavery as a threat to the cotton industry and opposed him, but this is a mistake.
Newspaper the Manchester Evening News indicates that the Drink could not be the author of the petition about the withdrawal of the bill from 1806, and against the abolition of the slave trade were his father, also named Robert.
Also on the list is a monument to sir Francis Drake, the Navigator of the 16th century, known for his role in the victory over the Spanish Armada, and the Admiral Nelson. List continue to study British media.
In London in early June was dismantled a monument to the slave trader Robert Milligan, who owned plantations in Jamaica. Reportedly, this was done at the request of the public.
Racism also criticized sir Winston Churchill, a monument which was damaged during recent protests in London. Although the monuments will not be reassessed under the work created by the mayor of London of the Committee, against the protests of Churchill’s many critics.
“He certainly believed that white people are superior to others, he clearly talked about this,” notes historian Richard That.
“He made nasty comments about the Indians, called them terrible people with terrible beliefs” — adds the historian.
In Oxford again there are calls to remove the monument to the initiator of the British colonial expansion in South Africa of the nineteenth century, Cecil Rhodes, founder of De Beers, which is engaged in diamond mining.
At the beginning of June at the building of Oriel College, Oxford University, on the facade of the memorial to Rhodes, marched several thousand people. The protest was peaceful, the participants chanted “Rhodes must fall”.
To dismantle the statue of Rhodes, act 26 of the 48 members of the city Council of Oxford has the right to remove the monument.
One of the online petitions for the dismantling of the statue has gained more than a quarter of a million signatures.
The rector of the University of Oxford Lord Chris Patten has called the demands of the protesters “a little hypocritical”.
“A little hypocritical that Oxford takes money to train a hundred students each year, a fifth of whom come from Africa, and then claims to reset the monument to Rhodes in the Thames,” he said.
The name of Cecil Rhodes named several grants and scholarships for tuition for foreign students. His extensive charitable work has touched many educational institutions in South Africa.
Patten added that adheres to the same point of view on the figure of Rhodes, Nelson Mandela, called in 2003 the British colonizer “part of the forces that made South Africa what it is”.
Councilman Oxford Shaista Aziz’s statement called Patten tactless and did not address the essence of the claims of the activists.
Movement “Rhodes must fall”, which organized the rally, came in 2015, when a group of students demanded to remove the statue of Rhodes. Then, the University eventually decided to leave the monument.
France: before the demolition has not yet reached, but philosopher, educator and General hurt
In Paris was drenched in red paint, two statues Dating back to the period of the French colonial Empire.
Suffered a monument to the philosopher-educator Voltaire, whose fortune was known to have been replenished by colonial trade.
Red paint poured over a monument to General Hubert Leota, who participated in colonial wars in Indochina and Morocco and believed colonialism was a boon to the population of territories.
The monument was erected at the Palace of the disabled, where the grave of Napoleon.
Also in Lille on the pedestal of the monument to the French General of the 19th century, the Governor of Senegal Louis, the place Faidherbe, unknown labels “colonizer” and “the killer”.
Belgium: king Leopold II
In Belgium, after weeks of protests against racism from a pedestal have removed several monuments to king Leopold II.
Who ruled Belgium in the nineteenth century, the monarch famous capture of the valley of the Congo river. When it was carried out a brutal colonial policies against the local population until the genocide. The number of victims of the colonial policy of Belgium is estimated at 10 million people. It was under Leopold II from carrying out punitive operations soldiers were asked to show hands of those killed.
The Black Lives Matter protests in Belgium were massive — at the beginning of June on the streets of Brussels left ten thousand people. They came to the square in front of the Palace of justice, main court of Belgium, the construction of which was financed by Leopold II.
Monument to Leopold in Antwerp during the protests was set on fire and vandalized with graffiti, and later the city authorities took it off the pedestal and put it in the Museum. In Brussels, the monument to the king wrote the word “killer”. Another monument to the king painted during protests in the city of Ghent.
The dismantling of the monument to Leopold II in Belgium, there are opponents who believe the king is the founder of the Belgian international trade, which brought the country riches.
The Belgians continue to sign petitions demanding the demolition of all monuments of the king in the country. One of the petitions signed by more than 70 thousand people.