Washington, D.C. — Protesters gathered at Lincoln Park on Tuesday to voice their outrage at the Emancipation Memorial that is at the heart of the park. The memorial features President Abraham Lincoln standing over a kneeling freed slave.
It's because of Lincoln standing tall and the slave being at his feet that protesters said the statue must come down. They say it "embodies the fact that black people are inferior to white people. We are out here today because this statue embodies that our freedoms is only on white people's timetable and that's not true."
The funds for the memorial primarily came from freed slaves and African-American Union veterans and was built in 1876, according to the National Park Service.
One of the main speakers for the event said the park was "on stolen land" and it does not belong to the federal government.
"This is a revolution! This is a change! And for those who need an English 101 on the word 'revolution,' it is the complete reimagining, restructuring, and rethinking of society to ensure that it serves not just a portion of people, but all the people," the speaker said.
He went on to say they are unable to rely on Democrats, such as Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY), Rashida Tlaib (MI), and Ilhan Omar (MN), to help their cause.
"And for the white people, I know it might sound unsettling. You might think, 'Oh they're gonna come for our houses, our careers, our jobs, what's gonna happen next?' Well, we're going to be out here and we gonna make sure we get what's owed to us...if you stand in the way, we will move you out the way!" the speaker said.
He added the time to be peaceful and complacent "for our freedom and liberation is over!"
They promised to come back to the park on Thursday to tear down the memorial:
Interior Secretary David Bernhardt has requested for National Guardsmen to be activated once again to help U.S. Park Police and D.C. police to protect monuments and statues across the city.