Native American activists criticized U.S. President Donald Trump’s intention to visit Mount Rushmore in South Dakota on Independence Day, Fox News writes.
The American leader has planned an event on Mount Rushmore on July 3, within its framework, a flight of fighters and the first firework since 2009 are to take place. However, Native American activists opposed this, considering the mountain with portraits of four US presidents carved on it a symbol of the desecration of their land that the colonialists had stolen from them. Against the backdrop of anti-racist speeches by supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement (BLM, “Black lives are important”), some of them advocate the destruction of the memorial, equating it with the monuments of slaveholders that are massively destroyed by protesters.
Thus, a member of the Oglala-Lakota tribe and the head of the local organization of activists NDN Collective said that Mount Rushmore symbolizes “white superiority and structural racism.” In his opinion, depicting on it American politicians who stole land from the local indigenous population and committed its genocide is unfair.
Trump has long shown interest in Mount Rushmore. In particular, according to the governor of South Dakota, Trump once declared a desire to carve his image on the mountain. Later, he joked about this topic during an election rally.
Sculptures on Mount Rushmore were erected in 1927-1941. They portray four American presidents: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln. Local indigenous tribes consider the monument desecrating their lands.
The name of the BLM movement is consonant with the main slogan of the protests that swept dozens of American cities: their participants are struggling with the systematic oppression of black US residents and police brutality. Protests and riots began after African-American George Floyd died during his arrest.