Donald Trump 'sad' to see pro-slavery statues go

  • 18/08/2017

Donald Trump says he is "sad" to see the removal of statues commemorating Confederate generals and other pro-slavery figures.

"Sad to see the history and culture of our great country being ripped apart with the removal of our beautiful statues and monuments," he wrote on Twitter on Friday morning (NZ time).

Signs calling for the renaming Lee Park to Heyer Park, the site where white supremacists and Nazis gathered last weekend.
Signs calling for the renaming Lee Park to Heyer Park, the site where white supremacists and Nazis gathered last weekend. Photo credit: Getty

"You can't change history, but you can learn from it. Robert E Lee, Stonewall Jackson - who's next, Washington, Jefferson? So foolish!

"Also, the beauty that is being taken out of our cities, towns and parks will be greatly missed and never able to be comparably replaced!"

Mr Trump's presidency has been engulfed in controversy over his response to the weekend's events in the Virginia college town of Charlottesville.

Violence erupted when white nationalists marched in protest over the planned removal of a statute of Robert E Lee, the Confederate army commander in the Civil War that ended in 1865. A woman was killed when a man described as a white nationalist crashed his car into the counter-protesters.

Mr Trump blamed the violence on not just the white nationalist rally organisers but the anti-racism counter-protesters, and said there were "very fine people" among both groups.

Opponents call the statues a festering symbol of racism, while supporters say they honour US history. Some of the monuments have become rallying points for white nationalists.

Statues are being removed, or considered for removal, in California, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, Tennessee, Virginia and Texas.

Vice President Mike Pence said he stood by the President and his words. Other Republicans aren't, with both Fox News and MSNBC trying and failing to get a single member of the party on camera to defend Mr Trump.

A new NBC poll has found 40 percent of Americans now back impeaching Mr Trump and removing him from office.

Protesters want the park where the Charlottesville protest took place to be renamed after the woman who died, Heather Heyer.

Reuters / Newshub.

Contact Newshub with your story tips:
news@newshub.co.nz