The Donald J. Trump State Park is a largely undeveloped plot of land donated to New York state in 2006 by Trump, when he was actively a real estate developer. Now, a New York state lawmaker wants to re-name the park to honor Heather Heyer, the woman who died last month during the violent clashes between protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Assembly member Nily Rozic (D) says re-naming the land “Heather D. Heyer State Park” would be a unifying symbol to the country.
“The renaming would acknowledge that its current designation does not reflect the goals of uplifting and unifying New Yorkers,” said Rozic.
On Saturday, Aug. 12, violent riots in Charlottesville, Virginia, included an intentional attack on pedestrians. A vehicle mowed down a group of people, killing Heyer and injuring 19 others, according to the Department of Homeland Security’s statement regarding the incident.
On the day of the protest, President Trump maintained that protesters from both sides held some of the blame for the violence. The president faced widespread criticism from those who felt he hadn’t strongly denounced the white supremacists they believed were responsible.
President Trump responded to the criticism the following Monday, saying: “As I said on Saturday, we condemn, in the strongest possible terms, this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence. It has no place in America. And as I have said many times before, no matter the color of our skin, we all live under the same laws, we all salute the same great flag, and we are all made by the same Almighty God. We must love each other, show affection for each other and unite together in condemnation of hatred, bigotry and violence. We must rediscover the bonds of love and loyalty that bring us together as Americans.”
The president later said there were “very fine people” among the protesters there to decry the city’s decision to remove a Confederate statue of General Robert E. Lee, sparking renewed outrage.
Rozic says Heyer’s life was “taken away by white supremacists who have been emboldened ever since President Trump took office.”
“In New York, we continue standing by one another and calling out those who seek to divide us,” she reportedly continued. “This activism is not new — it is embedded in our state’s history. And re-naming Donald J. Trump State Park would serve as a reminder of the transformative power it holds to carry us forward.”
There is now a New York assembly petition circulating, calling for the park’s name change. According to the website associated with the movement, renaming the park would honor Heyer and her activism, and, additionally, “serve as a reminder of how important it is for us to denounce those who seek to divide us.”
The Donald J. Trump State Park is located within the towns of Yorktown and Putnam Valley, in Westchester and Putnam Counties, New York. The park encompasses 436 acres in southern New York.
The CEO of DML NEWS, Dennis Michael Lynch, lives in the state of New York. He said, “We’re going to pull Trump’s name off a plot of land he donated and rename it after a protester who didn’t live in New York? How about we rename the Clinton airport in Arkansas with the names of the men killed in Benghazi instead.”
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