I've got an appetite for desecration now. I’ve watched Black Lives Matter protests persist over the past month and change. I’ve participated in them with my family. I’ve seen police abolition become an important issue—arguably THE most important one—when the concept wasn’t even on the mainstream radar back in the spring. The toppling of statues, be they Confederate or conquistador, has been an unexpected bonus to the saga. But holy shit, has it ever been a necessary one. Are you ready for some STATUE DESTRUCTION PORN? Well then, lemme take you round the horn, amigo!
Here’s Christopher Columbus getting his ass torn down in Baltimore just the other night!
Goddamn, he landed head first! That statue is gonna have to go through the concussion protocol. And here’s Junipero Serra, patron saint of Bad Men With Good Intentions, getting a blowtorch to the face in Sacramento before HIS sorry ass gets wrestled down to the ground!
Look at the protesters’ removal technique! It’s so professional! I’m not sure I would know how to topple a statue myself but these guys are really good at it! Some of them must work in tree disposal during the day! They took Serra down in LA, too! I didn’t even know who Junipero Serra was before this started. Turns out he was the Mike Pence of 18th century priests! I’m learning all this just now! LEARNING BY BREAKING SHIT RULES!
Another case in point: Edward Colston, a British slave trader whose own monument did an involuntary faceplant.
Watch as protesters stomp on Colston and then dunk him into a nearby harbor as a crowning blow. Throwing toppled statues into a body of water is so incredibly clutch. Gives the festivities a real mafia touch. Plus it compels hapless losers and grim politicians to rescue the statue after the fact. Pathetic.
I’m not done yet! I’M NEVER DONE. I could watch these videos all day, and I have. Here’s Francis Scott Key getting the Saddam treatment in San Francisco:
Here’s George Washington, torn down and spray-painted and left for dead in Portland:
Here’s that fucking traitor Jefferson Davis cow-tipped in Richmond:
Here’s Columbus, again!
Here’s a double-dip of debasing the Confederacy from North Carolina: first in Raleigh and then in Durham a few years ago. Combine those with Silent Sam getting his in Chapel Hill a year ago and you’ve got the entire Research Triangle covered.
Here’s Albert Pike, yet another shitty guy I didn’t know and didn’t realize we had a monument of, getting ripped down in DC. This one’s extra gratifying because Pike’s on a pedestal that’s way high, so when he hits the ground you get a quality THUD. And here’s Robert E. Lee, arguably the worst of the lot, defaced beyond recognition in Richmond. Protesters didn’t tear that statue down, but Richmond got the point. They’re formally removing all these monuments. Andrew Jackson is already gone. You’re next, Lee.
I myself have not had a chance to tear down a statue. They don’t publish a schedule on Twitter for this kinda thing. But if I have a chance down the line to watch it happen in person, and maybe even give the cable a tug, I will be there. Then I’ll build my own monument to the monument-topplers, with a memorial to all victims of police violence erected in every major American city. I’ve lived through enough shitty history, and as these statues attest, many Americans’ descendants have lived through even worse. I don’t mind living in a little bit of GOOD history for a change. Watching all these kings on the chessboard get knocked over is so good I feel a sugar high coming on. I LOVE THIS SHIT!
In fact, fuck it! Let’s hunt even bigger game! They already yanked Thomas Jefferson off his throne in Portland. If they wanna take the flagship Jefferson Memorial in DC down, I’ll gladly chisel off a piece of rubble and sell it on eBay. I live in the DC area. Getting to that memorial is a COMPLETE pain in the ass. And once you’re inside of it, you’re treated to engraved quotes like, “I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man,” that are outright hypocrisies coming from a slave rapist. Take Jefferson’s ass OUT. And turn Monticello into a free public university while you’re at it.
Mount Rushmore? You can get rid of that, too. I went to Mount Rushmore when I was a kid. It was cool to look at for ten minutes, and then my dad and I realized we were stuck in Buttfuck, South Dakota with nothing else to do. Stone Mountain? Grind that thing down to a grain of sand and then build a NEW mountain on top of Brian Kemp’s head.
Our nation is polluted, from coast to coast, with fake history. What we’re all living through right now is a long overdue correction of that history. I know pisspots like Trump and Jim Jordan and Larry Hogan all wanna bitch their way into making it stop, but they can’t. Now that Americans know that a lot of previously untouchable historic notions are, in fact, quite vulnerable when prodded, they’re gonna keep chiseling away. Fine by me. If Ulysses Grant ends up as collateral damage in the process, I don’t give a shit. How much collateral damage did HE overlook in his time?
If we can’t topple living leaders until November, the dead make a fine substitute. Throw them in the sea. Rename the military bases. Re-christen the ships. Contract Dan Snyder’s awful NFL team. Symbols matter in this country. For centuries now, they’ve helped keep poisonous ideas aloft. I know the REAL progress will be made in defunding the police, and in enacting universal healthcare, and breaking up industrial monopolies. But tearing down these monuments is a fine start toward making that progress. These statues are the subliminal bedrock of all our worst institutional practices. Tear them all down. Tear them all down and start over with something better.
Update, 2:51 p.m. ET: North Carolina knower Paul Blest pointed out that the statue in Durham was taken down a few years ago, so we updated the post to make that clear.