New York Times columnist Charles M. Blow exposed in Sunday's op-ed that statues of "Yes, even George Washington" must fall amid intense debate over historic monuments.
"On the subject of American slavery, I am an absolutist: slavers were amoral monsters. The very idea that a group of people believed they had the right to possess another human being is abhorrent and depraved. The fact that their control was imposed by violence was barbaric, "wrote Blow.
He dismissed the defense of the slave owners as people "who respect the customs of the time" and said that "they used anti-black dehumanization to justify slave ownership and profit from slave labor."
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"Some people opposed to tearing down monuments ask, 'If we start, where will we stop?' It could start with the Confederate generals, but all slaveholders could easily become targets. Even George himself Washington. That's what I say, "absolutely damn!" "Blow exclaimed.
The New York Times columnist explained that Washington owned more than 100 slaves, noting the Fugitive Slave Act of 1793 that he signed into law that allowed slave owners to capture fugitives in any state and criminalized the help of escaped slaves. . Decades later, the Thirteenth Amendment struck down the law.
"Let me be clear: Those black people enslaved by George Washington and others, including other founders, were as human as I am today. They love, laugh, cry and hurt like I do," Blow wrote. "When I hear that people excuse their slavery and torture as an artifact of the time, I am forced to consider that if slavery were the prevailing normality of this time, my own slavery would also be a shrug."
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Blow insisted that monuments in public spaces should be "reconsidered," and emphasized that "no one's honorifics can erase the horror he or she has inflicted on others."
He concluded: "Slave owners should not be honored with monuments in public spaces. We have museums for that, which also provide a better context. This is not an elimination of history, but a better appreciation of its horrible truth." .