Around the world, there is a palpable feeling of racial revolution this week. The death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police set off a chain reaction of protests and demonstrations that quickly swept the globe.
In hundreds of countries, on nearly every continent, the people were marching against racism, against inequality, and against prejudice.
And their gripes weren’t only with the oppressors of the modern day, either, as a number of historical monuments and statues came crashing down, from 18th century slave traders to American Civil War generals.
Some even went back to 1492 – the year that Columbus sailed the ocean blue.
Statues of Christopher Columbus were targeted by protesters in Massachusetts and Virginia on Tuesday night in an act of solidarity with indigenous peoples.
The 8-foot-tall memorial to the explorer in Richmond, Va., was pulled down with ropes and dragged roughly 200 yards to nearby Landing at Foundation Lake, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch. It was also reportedly briefly lit on fire.
The base of the statue was covered in graffiti, and protesters held signs reading “This land is Powhatan land” and “Columbus represents genocide.”
Photos from the scene were wild, to say the least.
Christopher Columbus Statue is in Fountain Lake, Byrd Park, Richmond, Virginia https://t.co/jvtRS0NjrN pic.twitter.com/EbyVXjS6ri
— Rad_Meg_DC (@megdcrad) June 10, 2020
Some cities, such as Birmingham, Alabama, have begun to preemptively remove potentially offensive monuments in order to prevent protesters from injuring themselves in an attempt to topple them.