In Defense of Saints and Statues

Statue of Father Junipero Serra at the Carmel Mission in Carmel, Calif. (Michael Fiala/Reuters)
The mob-led campaign to erase Father Junipero Serra illustrates the problem with the crusade against public monuments.

NRPLUS MEMBER ARTICLE O ne of the arguments regularly circulating on social media in defense of razing statues is the rather mindless declaration that “statues aren’t history.”

Of course they aren’t. But none of us who opposes the indiscriminate destruction of public memorials by feckless mobs does so because we believe statues are history.

Our objection, rather, is to the willful ignorance of history exhibited by those who, under cover of night, topple monuments to great men and, in the light of day, justify their anarchy by ripping those men from their context and placing them on trial for their lack of 21st-century progressivism.

Statues need not

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