Only those who are so-called “woke” (I just threw up in my mouth) are deserving of statues in American history. That’s what CNN commentator Angela Rye said during a panel discussion with CNN’s Kate Bolduan. As the nation descends into chaos concerning political commentary over the violence that occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia that left scores of people injured and one woman dead, we’re on the discussion of statues. White nationalists descended into the city last Saturday to supposedly protest the removal of a Robert E. Lee statue. Far left counter protesters arrived and skirmishes broke out. It culminated when a white nationalist drove into counter demonstrators, killing one and injuring 19 others.
Now, we have more cities debating the removal of Confederate statues. Katie wrote how a solid majority of Americans oppose the erasure of American history. Yet, with Rye’s remarks, we now know that this is about removing anyone who they feel were terrible in our history. Washington owned slaves; he has to go. Jefferson owned slaves; he has to go. Oh, we can of course learn about the founding of our nation in classrooms, but by God—when you erect a statue to the men who founded this great country, that’s crossing the line. The Washington Free Beacon clipped the insanity, where Rye gets into a bit of an exchange with Daily Beast’s John Avlon, who said Rye was feeding into the Trump White House’s talking points on the matter. He’s not wrong [emphasis mine]:
George Washington was a slave owner, and we need to call slave owners out for what they are, whether we think they were protecting American freedom or not," Rye said. "He wasn't protecting my freedom. My ancestors weren't deemed human beings to him."
"So to me, I don't care if it's a George Washington statue or a Thomas Jefferson statue or a Robert E. Lee statue. They all need to come down," Rye said.
Rye added that Americans need to teach other about these figures "so we do not repeat [history], because we are very close to repeating it right now."
"Yeah, Angela, you've got a problem here," Avlon interjected.
"I'm not finished, John," Rye said.
"You're feeding into Steve Bannon and Trump's talking points," Avlon continued.
"No, no, no. But I'm not, but I'm not, but I'm not, John," Rye said, speaking over Avlon.
"And I'm gonna finish my point," she said. "I'm not feeding into white supremacy; I'm calling out white supremacy for what it is. And sometimes what it is, John, are blind spots. Sometimes what it is, is not acknowledging that this country was built upon a very violent past that resulted in death, and the raping, and the killing of my ancestors."
Rye said she was not going to make a distinction between George Washington and Robert E. Lee.
"So I'm not going to allow us to say it's OK for a Robert E. Lee but not a George Washington [statue]," Rye said. "We need to call it what it is."
"But I'm not giving any deference to George Washington or Robert E. Lee," she added.
Slavery was a horrible institution. We fought our bloodiest war to end it. Yet, these were the times our Founding Fathers lived in. the founded this country. They drafted the documents that said our people were endowed with God-given rights from which this nation would be based upon; a totally revolutionary concept to the nations created around monarchies, ethnic groups, and landed aristocracies of Europe. This is just another instance of American progressives engaging in their favorite pastime: erasing American history and slamming our founding. So, let it be known that this isn’t just about the Confederate monuments, which by the way, are also part of American history. Our nation has had many low points. We have progressed, we have gotten better, and yes, more work needs to be done in a lot of areas. But no one knew that statues existed. No one really cares. Yet, now that we have the legions of the politically correct poisoning our society, they want everything that they feel triggered in American history to go. As many have said about this group, there is no neutral party option; they will make you care. The removal of Confederate statues is the backdoor to this nonsense.
Washington was our first president, but we can’t have statues? Thomas Jefferson founded the University of Virginia, but we can’t have statues? Sorry, liberals—you’re not raising Monticello or Mount Vernon to the ground. This debate has gone off the rails and this trainwreck isn’t done yet.