Another monument has been vandalized. According to Houston Public Information Officer Victor Senties in an interview with the Houston Press, concerned citizens called the Houston Police Department late Thursday night to report that the bronze statue of Christopher Columbus had been vandalized. Bright red paint was splattered from the statue’s head to his toes.
The life-sized statue of Christopher Columbus stands respectfully on a block in Bell Park on Montrose Boulevard, pointing forward to future discoveries.
“The paint was already dry when we got there,” Senties reported, “so at this point we do not know who did this or when.”
By 10 a.m. on Friday morning the bronze Columbus was looking like himself again. Three men from two restoration companies, which were headed by Robert Pringle and Byron Kessler, worked quickly to remove the paint. They used a special glaze to coat the statue then power-washed it. The restoration companies said that the red paint peeled off like a scab.
The vandalism in Houston comes in the wake of the Charlottesville, Virginia rally which turned violent. Since then, there has been a growing chorus of demands that Confederate statues across the country be removed, including in Houston.
President Donald Trump and others insist that the statues need to stay.
…the beauty that is being taken out of our cities, towns and parks will be greatly missed and never able to be comparably replaced!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 17, 2017
On the other side of the argument, protesters nationwide are now claiming that all monuments which glorify slavery in our cities, towns, and park must be removed.
That Christopher Columbus put Native Americans to work as slaves is well-documented. In Houston, it comes as no surprise that he has been thrown into the debate.
The Houston Police Department is investigating the vandalism and urges anyone with information about the vandalism to call them immediately.
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