Was Theodore Roosevelt racist

Roosevelt falls

Because of racist symbolism, a statue of the former US President Theodore Roosevelt in front of the New York Natural History Museum is removed. The monument, which shows Roosevelt on horseback next to an indigenous and a black person on foot, has long been "controversial," the museum said. "Many of us perceive the representation of Native American and the black and their arrangement in the monument as racist." After the death of George Floyd in a brutal police operation, public attention also turned to statues and monuments as "powerful and hurtful symbols of systemic racism, ”the museum explained. The monument should therefore be removed.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio agreed with the assessment: the memorial portrayed blacks and natives as "subjugated and racially inferior". A removal of this "problematic statue" was therefore "the right decision at the right time." Theodore Roosevelt - not to be confused with the future President Franklin D. Roosevelt (a distant relative) - was President from 1901 to 1909. Although he was considered progressive, he also had racist views.

In the wake of the debate on racism in the United States after Floyd's death, protesters overturned or smeared a number of statues with racist or colonial references. Statues of generals of the Confederate Army have come under fire because the renegade southern states fought for the continuation of slavery in the US Civil War. AFP / nd

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