Mayor De Blasio said New York City will carry out a 90-day review of all symbols of hate on city property. He announced this following the explosion of violence ignited by white supremacist groups in Charlottesville, Virginia. The violence left three people and thirty five others injured.
After the rally organized by white supremacist “Unite the Right,” a car plowed into a crowd, leaving one person dead and nineteen others injured. A 32 year old woman was one of the people killed in the car crash, according to police statement. The total number of people killed in the car crash and clashes between the two rival groups was thirty five. Police confirmed that the injuries ranged from minor to serious.
The KKK members and White Supremacists organized the Charlottesville rally to oppose the replacement of a statue of U.S. Confederate Army General Robert E. Lee in Virginia. This came after local government in Charlottesville voted to have the controversial statue of General Robert E. Lee removed from the city's park.
During the civil war in America, General Lee commanded troops to invade villages and towns to recapture free black people for enslavement. Right now there is a petition to have the statue replaced by Ms. Hayor. The petition has received more than 29 000 signatures.
NYC officials are now setting up a committee of experts that will review all symbols of hate in New York and make recommendations, for which symbols or statues to remove.
Blasio has already called for the removal of a sidewalk maker glorifying Philipe Petain. Petain was a Nazi associate and was responsible for deporting at least 10 000 Jews to concentration camps under Hitler administration. He also implemented several discriminatory policies against the Jews, such as exclusion from certain professions and property confiscation.
In addition, NYC Governor Andrew Cuomo ordered Bronx Community College's campus to pull down memorials for two confederate generals – Thomas Jonathan and Robert E. Lee. Cuomo said there are many New Yorkers who can replace the two.
This is part on an exercise across the United States to get rid of controversial symbols and statues from all public institutions and places.
Bronx college president has not confirmed when the monuments will be brought down.
However, de Blasio's decision to review all symbols of hate in New York City has met opposition from different quarters. On Wednesday, Assembly Woman Nicole Malliotakis opposed Blasio's move to review all symbols of hate in NYC's property. She said that Blasio only made the decision for political mileage. She vehemently opposed the removal of Christopher Columbus statue. Earlier this week Council Speaker Melissa Mark said that the statue of Columbus should be axed.
Blasio said a panel has already started reviewing monuments and statues symbolizing racism and anti-Semitism in New York City. The panel will review each figure or symbol and make recommendations. The mayor will then make final decision. However, his critic Malliotakis said that the mayor should make the recommendations public before the next election. She warned him against using this exercise for political gain.