Chicago has been plagued by riots, vandalism, looting and arson — to say nothing of homicide, which has increased more than 30 percent, with 434 people killed so far this year — but Mayor Lori Lightfoot has solved the problem by eliminating the statues that were causing it:Not to mention Baltimore, where he was decapitated and unceremoniously dumped in the harbor, from which a coalition of Italians rescued him.
Chicago’s two Christopher Columbus statues were taken down early Friday morning, nearly one week after protests erupted in the city.
Crews were seen taking down the statues in Grant Park and the city’s Little Italy neighborhood during the overnight hours. By 6 a.m., only the pedestal remained in Grant Park, where the statue stood since 1933 after being dedicated during Chicago’s second World Fair.
“The city of Chicago — at Mayor Lightfoot’s direction — has temporarily removed the Christopher Columbus statues in Grant Park and Arrigo Park until further notice,” the mayor’s office said in a statement. “This action was taken after consultation with various stakeholders. It comes in response to demonstrations that became unsafe for both protesters and police, as well as efforts by individuals to independently pull the Grant Park statue down in an extremely dangerous manner. This step is about an effort to protect public safety and to preserve a safe space for an inclusive and democratic public dialogue about our city’s symbols. In addition, our public safety resources must be concentrated where they are most needed throughout the city, and particularly in our South and West Side communities.”
Reports first surfaced on social media Thursday indicating the statue at Grant Park could be taken down as soon as late Thursday night.
Protesters across the county have called for the removal of statues of Columbus, saying that the Italian explorer is responsible for the genocide and exploitation of native peoples in the Americas.
Still, some Italian-Americans in Chicago said they did not support the move.
“Columbus is a symbol of hope who we’ve celebrated for years and maybe we all forgot why we celebrated Christopher Columbus,” Sergio Giangrande, president of the Joint Civic Committee of Italian American said. “To take someone who’s a symbol of hope for us? We are not OK with that.”
Giangrande added, however, that the group understands the safety concerns but hoped for a compromise.
“I can guarantee you that Italian Americans are not happy about this,” he said.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot said Monday that she would announce a process in which the city will take inventory of the various monuments, paintings “and other things that memorialize” Chicago’s past and history.
“In time, our team will determine there are no monuments to African Americans in this city,” Lightfoot said. “There are no monuments to women. There are no monuments that reflect the contributions of people in the city of Chicago who contributed to the greatness of this city.” . . .
Last Friday, chaos erupted as clashes broke out during a protest calling for the Grant Park statue’s removal. There, 49 Chicago police officers and four demonstrators were injured. More than a dozen individuals were also arrested. . . .
In June, the Grant Park statue of Christopher Columbus was spray-painted with the letters “BLM” for Black Lives Matter. The following day, vandals hit a statue of President George Washington in the city’s Washington Park, spray painting the words “slave owner” and “God Bless Amerikkka” on the base and placing a white hood over the monument in reference to the Ku Klux Klan.
The Columbus statues in both Grant Park and the city’s Little Italy neighborhood were also vandalized last month.
Statues of Columbus have also been toppled or vandalized in cities such as Miami; Richmond, Virginia; St. Paul, Minnesota; and Boston, where one was decapitated.
So you see, these statues have caused all the problems in Chicago, which will immediately become a utopian paradise, now that those provocative racist symbols have been banished from public view.Just like the violence in Baltimore suddenly stopped.
This innovative approach to crime has inspired me to propose my own bold reform. What if we could eliminate racism by banishing from view anything that caused people to believe negative racist stereotypes or to mutter racial epithets? I can think of one such cause of racism.
Now, now Stacy, it's not nice to make fun of someone's appearance, and even the undead have feelings. In some cities and states, they can vote and sometimes even be elected Mayor.
Get this woman’s face off TV, and racism will automatically be reduced.
As of the year 2000, approximately half a million Chicago residents identified as Italian. Probably not enough to make a difference in the city's or state's elections, but not enough to deliberately insult.