Well-deserved pushback against Chicago Monuments Project underway

Abraham Lincoln: The Head of State, designed by Augustus Saint-Gaudens. It is one of Chicago monuments “under review.”

By John Ruberry 

Last week in my DTG post I wrote about the Chicago Monuments Project, Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s response to last summer’s riot surrounding the Christopher Columbus statue in Grant Park south of downtown.

The committee for the project earlier this month identified 41 monuments, mostly statues but also plaques, reliefs, and one painting. Five of the monuments are statues of Abraham Lincoln. Yes, that guy, the one who led the Union during the Civil War, which led to ending slavery in America. Illinois is the Land of Lincoln, that slogan has been emblazoned on every Illinois license plate for decades. His face is on all standard Illinois license plates. On every Illinois driver’s license and state ID card is Lincoln’s countenance–and automobile titles too.

Other monuments “under review” by the project include statues of Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, Leif Erikson, Ulysses S. Grant, William McKinley, several pieces honoring Father Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet, and works featuring anonymous Native Americans. 

But don’t worry! Really! In a Chicago Sun-Times op-ed published last week–on Washington’s birthday–three of the project’s members assured us:

Various accounts, especially on social media, have inaccurately described this project as an effort to tear it all down. This could not be further from the truth. It is a discussion.

I don’t believe them. The “discussion,” in my opinion, is a first step to, yes, “tear it all down.” Liberals work by way of incrementalism. Many left-wing politicians, probably most, want to ban private ownership of guns. They can’t express that sentiment because of the predictable outrage–and it could mean that they’ll be voted out of office. So they start with the easier targets, such as bans on semi-automatic rifles. If they succeed they’ll move on to other firearms, ending with the banning the type of handgun Mrs. Marathon Pundit purchased this year.

So the Chicago Monuments Project is beginning with “a discussion.” Without pushback that discussion very well may devolve into moving statues in the wee hours, which is what happened to two Christopher Columbus statues, including the one at the center of the riot, into storage. Both of those statues of the Italian Navigator are on the project’s “under review” status. 

It’s not just social media users and conservative news sources that have objected to the Chicago Monuments Project. In a Chicago Tribune op-ed, Lincoln biographers Sidney Blumenthal and Harold Holzer wrote, “The Orwellian idea of removing Lincoln from Chicago would be as vain as an attempt to erase the history of Chicago itself.”

The editoral board of the Chicago Tribune–paid subscription required–favors keeping the Lincoln stautes.

Lori Lightfoot even weighed in, “But let’s be clear, we’re in the Land of Lincoln, and that’s not going to change.”

But I’d like to explain to you that the other monuments are also worth keeping. Benjamin Franklin owned two slaves but he freed them and he later became an abolititionist. Ulysses S. Grant, when he was under tremendous financial hardship, freed the only slave he owned. Grant of course was the commander of all Union armies in the Civil War. George Washington’s slaves were freed after the death of Martha Washington. Yes, Washington is the Father of our Nation.

Other than being white, I can’t astertain why Marquette and Jolliet, or Leif Erikson, are “under review” in Chicago.

The source of the rage against Lincoln likely comes from his approving the hanging of 38 Dakota warriors in 1862. But Abe commuted 264 Dakota War executions. There were atrocities in that conflict committed by both sides. Here’s what a Norwegian immigrant described in a letter at that time, courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society:

The Indians have begun attacking the farmers. They have already killed a great many people, and many are mutilated in the cruelest manner. Tomahawks and knives have already claimed many victims. Children, less able to defend themselves, are usually burned alive or hanged in the trees, and destruction moves from house to house.

If the Chicago Monuments Project is about education, then it probably means that Lightfoot sorely needs one. “In time, our team will determine there are no monuments to African Americans in this city,” Lightfoot said last summer while announcing what has become the Chicago Monuments Project. “There are no monuments to women. There are no monuments that reflect the contributions of people in the city of Chicago who contributed to the greatness of this city.”

But in her namesake park on the South Side stands a Gwendolyn Brooks statue. Brooks was the first African-American to serve as Illinois’ Poet Laureate. A couple miles north of that statue is the beautiful Victory Monument, which honors a World War I African American regiment, and a bit north of that one is the Monument to the Great Northern Migration. I believe each of these are on city of Chicago or Chicago Park District property.

Does Chicago need more monuments featuring women and minorities? Absolutely. It can also benefit with a Ronald Reagan statue. The Gipper is the only president who was born in Illinois and the first to live in Chicago, although the apartment where he lived as a child was razed by the University of Chicago in 2013.

Click here to view the monuments in question. To express your comments about the Chicago Monuments Project please click here. Please be courteous. And if you Tweet this blog post–please do!–use the #ChicagoMonuments hashtag.

Make your voice heard. They’ve begun to listen.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.


The Jobs Report & the Upcoming “Well Screw That” Moment for the Black Community

Marty Pilletti: The burlesque! Loew’s Paradise! Miserable and lonely! Miserable and lonely and stupid! What am I, crazy or something?! I got something good here! What am I hanging around with you guys for?!

Marty 1955

What have you got to lose?

Donald Trump

It’s axiomatic that when you have a dictatorship it takes a dramatic moment for things to change, for people to reach the point where they say as Sigorney Weaver famously did on Galaxy Quest: “Well Screw That”. and decide to bring it down.

When you have a one party state, the principle is the same a breaking point has to be reached. People have to look at a situation and like the title Character in Marty surrounded by guys who all thought the women he met yesterday was a dog say: “What am I hanging around with you guys for?!

The media would have you believe that the killing of George Floyd is that moment, but the reality is they have ginned up outrage like this before, Travon Martin, Michael Brown and the conditions for Black America did not change.

No I think the breaking moment has arrived but it happened yesterday with the jobs report from Friday:

2.5 Million jobs added, unemployment down but not everwhere (via Glenn):

What else do they have in common? Riots last week so bad that poor blacks in Chicago don’t have sources for food.

Wright, his grandmother and so many around here are trying to figure out which stores on the South Side are even left right now.

Chicago now has food deserts in places that weren’t food deserts before.

“Bronzeville Mariano’s was looted, the Walmart on 47th was looted. Jewel,” said activist William Calloway.

And the food deserts that were there before are worse now.

“Now you have to go out of your way to get this stuff,” said activist Emir Lions. “People that don’t have a car. People that do not have family and friends.”

“Some seniors can’t travel,” added Calloway…

…The biggest fear is that some of these stores won’t come back.

Remember before Cornoa Virus hit Black America had the lowest unemployment it had seen since emancipation and Prison reform combined with the need for workers meant that folks who weren’t given a chance before now had one.

Not anymore, at least if you are living in a blue state or a blue city where unless you want to march, or protest or loot, you are out of luck.

However if you are living in a red state outside of a blue city within it, you’re open for business, jobs are surging back and people are heading back toward the prosperity they once had.

Now don’t get me wrong, there are still millions of black Americans who aren’t done playing Charlie Brown to the Democrats Lucy and Joe Biden should easily get 75% of that vote or more.

But the Democrats are SO dependent on said vote that if POTUS even grabs a small bit more then he did last time or disgusted black democrats stay home it changes everything.

I submit and suggest that a lot of Black Americans not on the payroll of the DNC or any activist group are looking at this and saying and while not deviating publicly from the line BLM line will go to the voting booth on the city state and local level and vote “Well Screw that”.

And like Sigorney Weaver those who read lips will see the expletive come Nov 3rd.

The full scene is here

Vets, Asheed, Cleese, Idle and Cellphones Under the Fedora

It’s Veterans Day a holiday everywhere (except where I work of course). On on this day we take a few minutes to remember the folks to whom being “triggered” meant someone trying to kill them rather than someone saying something they don’t like on social media.

It never ceases to amaze me how so many Americans squander the freedom these men and women bequeathed them but in a society so narcissistic it’s to be expected. I wonder how many of our long dead vets if they saw what the society they had fought for had become, might have had 2nd thoughts about defending it?


Is light dawning on marble head?

If the Democrats aren’t scared of stuff like this they should be, but then again as long as their paid machine cronies are counting the votes in black area they will be able to disenfranchise black republican votes as they did in the days of Jim Crow.

Don’t think for a minute they won’t try.


I note the daily beast interviewed Eric Idle and John Cleese for the 50th anniversary of Monty Python and they of course had plenty to say against those of us who support Trump

“It’s been quite clear to me from the very beginning that he is not mentally balanced,” Cleese says of Trump. “He is an extraordinary caricature of an asshole; a person who has no interest in anyone else except himself. Every time he makes a decision, no matter how impulsive it is, it’s the one that makes him feel best about himself for the next 20 minutes.

Contrast that statement with the one above it and your irony meter will explode.

That doesn’t make him and them any brilliant when it comes to comedy.


One more Python quote from Eric Idle on Trump that made me laugh

Idle admits that, during a break from his busy schedule, he recently became addicted to MSNBC.
“The problem is, the way they cover everything, you constantly think, ‘They’ve got him!’” he says of the coverage of Trump’s travails. “Like they’re coming for him with the handcuffs. The golden handcuffs, of course.”

reminds me of a song…

Funny how Trump the supposedly Nazi/Racist dictator isn’t censoring them?


Finally This whole conversation is a pet peeve of mine:

Ms. Zideyah said that she and many of the women who attended the Ignite training were aware that they had to be careful about their social media posts, but worrying about what was stored on their phones was new.
“As an online human, you don’t think that those kinds of things are going to be used against you or leaked, especially from people that are closest to you,” Ms. Zideyah said. “But I do think that now that sort of training has to be implemented, because what you should keep on a phone is becoming a serious issue.”


via hot air headlines.

I’ve been saying this for decades but let’s try one more time.

Don’t put any image or thoughts on a phone or an email or a computer or any device that a computer is linked to that you would be ashamed to show to your grandmother.

I used to say “from your mother” but where you do think this generation got that idicoy from?