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From The Desk of the Publisher

President Donald Trump has criticized the idea of removing Christopher Columbus statues and called for the preservation of history. “We believe we should preserve our history, not tear it down,” Trump said at the Heritage Foundation’s annual President’s Club gathering. “Now they are even trying to destroy statues of Christopher Columbus. What’s next? Has to be stopped, it’s heritage.”

The controversy started when New York Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, a Puerto Rican native, who happens to be half Italian, suggested publicly that the city should consider tearing down the statue of Christopher Columbus in Columbus Circle. Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the creation of a commission in August following outcries from some New Yorkers who see Columbus as a symbol of Native American oppression.

Despite the public outcry, a new Marist poll finds that 56% of Americans have a “favorable view” of Columbus. Only 28% have an unfavorable view and the remaining group unsure. Italian Americans view Columbus as a celebration of their heritage. But others, particularly Native Americans, liberals and those in New York’s Puerto Rican and Dominican populations, view Columbus as a symbol of genocide. I find that amusing as Columbus is mentioned in the Puerto Rican National Anthem and the largest statue of Columbus is in the Dominican Republic, who also claims Columbus is buried there.

The commission’s review ended on December 7th and the Mayor will soon make the final decision if the Christopher Columbus statues need to be removed. Perhaps the Mayor will finally come to his senses and give the Italian American community a New Year’s present by ending this statue-based witch hunt!

If you want to comment on my column, just send me an email at BFSicily@gmail.com



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