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National-anthem statue trashed in Baltimore

January 17, 2018



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Even statues of children are no longer safe from anti-American vandals.

A bronze statue depicting two children honoring the national anthem in Patterson Park in Baltimore was defaced Monday with red paint. The words “Racist Anthem” were painted in front of it.

The plaque on the statue read: “To commemorate the centennial of the writing of the Star-Spangled Banner, the pupils of the public schools of Baltimore have erected this memorial upon Hampstead Hill where in September, 1814, the citizen soldiers of Maryland stood ready to sacrifice their lives in defense of their homes and their country.”

It was paid for by pennies from public school students more than a century ago. A nearby cannon was also defaced.

Baltimore and its public schools has changed a great deal in the century since.

Despite massive funding, the city’s public schools are turning out students that do not even qualify as literate. A recent investigation of six Baltimore schools found not a single student passed the state’s proficiency test in the subjects of math and English.

The changing face of Baltimore is also reflected in its recent campaign to tear down statues that the city government believes reflects “racism” or “white supremacy.”

In August, the Lee-Jackson Monument, dedicated to former Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, the brother-in-law of Francis Scott Key, was torn down along with the Confederate Soldiers and Sailors Monument on Mount Royal Avenue and the Confederate Women’s Monument. Mayor Catherine Pugh claimed her decision was motivated by “concern … for the safety and security of our people.”

Tearing down the statues, however, apparently has done nothing to improve “safety and security” in Baltimore. Last year, the city posted its highest ever per-capita homicide rate. There were 343 homicides in 2017, a per capita rate of 56 killings per 100,000 people.

The city today actually has fewer people than it did a century ago.

Nor has tearing down the statues dedicated to Confederate heroes done anything to stem the tide of vandalism directed against historical monuments in the city. Indeed, they have intensified.

A monument to Francis Scott Key, who wrote the poem that inspired the national anthem, was vandalized in September. And a 200-year-old monument to Christopher Columbus was smashed by a vandal with a sledgehammer in August, while a companion held a sign that said “Racism, Tear It Down.”

Pugh condemned the latest act of vandalism, pledging that those who did it would be held accountable and the statue cleaned. She was especially angry the attack took place on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

But other comments were more subdued, seemingly recognizing the legitimacy of the protesters’ point while disapproving of their tactics.

“We feel like there are ways to have this conversation and maybe defacing city property isn’t the most productive way to do it,” said Jennifer Robinson, executive director for the group Friends of Patterson Park.

There has been a recent push by “civil rights” groups such as the NAACP and liberal journalists to call the Star-Spangled Banner racist and undermine its use.

The California NAACP has already designated the anthem racist. Bill Press has called for abolishing the national anthem before football games. And Harvey Wasserman argued for abolishing even the very concept of a national anthem.


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