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Baltimore Protestors Tear Down Christopher Columbus Statue On July 4th

While many in the country decided to still celebrate the Fourth of July this year, some activists, however, kept fighting for justice amid nationwide protests against systemic racism and police violence against Black lives. 

Protesters in Baltimore on Saturday (July 4) tore down a Christopher Columbus statue in Herring Run Park near Little Italy, believed to be the nation’s oldest, The Baltimore Sun reports. The group used ropes to pull down the controversial sculpture and dump it into the city’s Inner Harbor.  Columbus is credited in history books as a hero who discovered America, but has come to symbolize greed, violence against natives, and oppression.

A video posted on Twitter viewed nearly 3.1 million times shows the historical holiday moment. 

RELATED: Protesters Try To Take Down Slaveowner Andrew Jackson Statue In Washington D.C.

The actions come a week after City Councilman Ryan Dorsey urged that the statue be renamed while other lawmakers tried to push to protect and preserve the statue. 

City Council President Brandon Scott, who is Black and also the Democratic nominee for mayor, released an official statement following the late-night events on Saturday night. 

“I suggested that the last administration remove this statue when they removed the Confederate monuments. I support Baltimore’s Italian-American community and Baltimore’s indigenous community. I cannot, however, support Columbus,” he said according to WBAL-TV.

The sudden removal and continuous of vandalism of statues with contentious national leaders who served as Confederate generals, slave owners, or supported slavery come after the Black Lives Matter movement of daily protests following the death of George Floyd, a Black Minneapolis man, who died after former white officer Derek Chauvin kneeled in his neck for more than eight minutes. 

BET has been covering every angle of the police killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Rayshard Brooks and other social justice cases and the subsequent aftermath and protests. For our continuing coverage, click here.

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