‘Disgrace to our country!’ Trump calls for arrests as activists topple & BURN statue of Confederate Gen. Albert Pike in DC (VIDEO)
US President Donald Trump denounced Washington, DC police for seemingly doing nothing to prevent a group of activists from bringing down a Confederate general’s statue, calling for the “immediate” arrest of the perpetrators.
Videos have emerged showing a group of protesters in the US capital dismantling a statue of Confederate General Albert Pike on Friday evening. Activists made several unsuccessful attempts to tear down the monument, and even had to take a break to review their strategy before eventually knocking the statue from its pedestal – with local police making no attempt to intervene at any point.
After the statue came crashing down – to jubilant cheers from the crowd – the activists set it on fire. A video shows one of the protesters pouring what appears to be a flammable liquid onto the burning statue while the rest of the group applauded. At one point, a chant of “No justice, no peace” broke out.
And protesters just toppled the Albert Pike statue in DC pic.twitter.com/gEzJm0OYjd— Perry Stein (@PerryStein) June 20, 2020
Shortly after the 11-foot high statue – which was the only outdoor sculpture in DC honoring a Confederate general (although he was depicted as a Freemason and not a soldier) – was upended, Trump took a swipe at police for making no attempt to thwart the monument’s destruction.
They have now lit the toppled statue on fire pic.twitter.com/53nrC4G72u— Perry Stein (@PerryStein) June 20, 2020
“The D.C. Police are not doing their job as they watch a statue be ripped down & burn,” Trump tweeted, adding that those responsible for the act of vandalism “should be immediately arrested.”
“A disgrace to our Country.”
The D.C. Police are not doing their job as they watch a statue be ripped down & burn. These people should be immediately arrested. A disgrace to our Country! @MayorBowser— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 20, 2020
General Pike’s statue is one of many that have been vandalized – either spray-painted with graffiti or toppled – within the past several weeks as people protesting police brutality have been on a mission to erase the nation’s Confederate past following the police killing of unarmed black man George Floyd in late May, which sparked the current wave of unrest.
On Thursday, a statue of George Washington in Portland, Oregon received similar treatment when it was torn down and draped in a burning US flag. While the latest spate of politically-motivated vandalism has not resulted in injuries, an earlier attempt to raze a monument in Virginia left one demonstrator with a serious head wound, prompting a popular science magazine to publish a comprehensive guide on how to bring monuments down without hurting anyone. It’s unclear if the demonstrators in DC heeded any of the advice from the manual, however.
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