Editor’s Note: A wave of “cancellations” has swept the U.S. and Europe. Compiled here is a list of people, monuments, and artistic works that have been the targets. The events are listed in reverse chronological order, although some incidents do overlap. This list will be updated as the cancellations continue. Please send a message to email@example.com if you have information about a cancellation that you would like to share.
93. San Diego State University professor emeritus of biology Stuart Hurlbert, a supporter of immigration restrictions and outspoken critic of Black Lives Matter, has become the subject of a faculty resolution and a student petition to revoke his emeritus status.
The petition was drafted by the SDSU’s Biology Graduate Student Association. It currently has over 550 signatures and claims that the biology department “has been plagued by one particular agent of intolerance, SDSU emeritus professor Dr. Stuart Hurlbert.”
Meanwhile, the university has approved the faculty resolution, and committees have been formed to decide on Professor Hurlbert’s emeritus status for the fall.
“Only academics could come up with a resolution that is so naive and diabolical at the same time,” Professor Hurlbert told The College Fix.
92. Catherine Roome, the president and lead executive officer of the Canadian company Technical Safety BC, has taken it upon herself to remove “Chief” from the label “Chief Executive Officer,” because the word is racist and offensive to indigenous people.
In an op-ed for The Globe and Mail, she writes, “The origin of my original title is European. That doesn’t give me a pass. Asking about how racism affects a person and being given an answer means I can choose to listen and do something, or I can stay silent.
“I have long been a champion for Indigenous rights and reconciliation. Yet I am ashamed to say, the thought had never even occurred to me that the title I proudly held could evoke such a response, or even be viewed as disrespectful to the very reconciliation process that I support.”
“So upon reflection, I have changed my title within the organization to president and lead executive officer.”
91. Early Friday morning, Mayor Lori Lightfoot ordered to temporarily remove the Christopher Columbus statues from Chicago’s Grant and Arrigo parks, despite pushback from Italian American leadership in the city and a lack of community deliberation and debate.
“This step is about an effort to protect public safety and to preserve a safe space for an inclusive and democratic public dialogue about our city’s symbols,” reads a statement from Mayor Lightfoot’s office.
“In addition, our public safety resources must be concentrated where they are most needed throughout the city, and particularly in our South and West Side communities.”
Alderman Raymond Lopez of Chicago’s 15th ward wrote on Twitter:
What has become of Chicago? We have a mayor forced into submission by anarchy & mob-rule? No more public process, official discourse, or on-the-record debate. The lesson learned is that if you want action from Lightfoot, show up en mass at her house & she will cave every time.
— Ald. Raymond Lopez (@RLopez15thWard) July 24, 2020
90. At the University of Connecticut, the president and vice president of the Undergraduate Student Government resigned recently — for being white.
“I feel that it is my duty to step down from my position to make space for BIPOC (black, indigenous and people of color) voices to truly rise and be heard. It is my responsibility to make space, not to create an echo,” VP Alex Ose said in The Daily Campus, the UConn student newspaper.
President Joshua Crow told the paper, “It is important in this time to ensure that marginalized groups have the platforms they need.”
The resignations came after an anonymous Instagram post from an account purporting to represent African American students at UConn.
89. Students at Marquette University are demanding that the school change the university seal, which is based on the painting “Father Marquette and the Indians” by Wilhelm Alfred Lamprecht.
The petition states that the “problematic” seal undermines the role of Native Americans in early American life and violates Marquette University’s diversity and tolerance policies.
Bryan Rindfleish, assistant professor of history at Marquette who specializes in Native and Early American history, said in an email, “Lamprecht’s painting taps into several historical inaccuracies and stereotypes that exist in American society about Native Americans today, particularly that of the ‘uncivilized Indian’ and the ‘vanishing Indian.'”
88. Carlin Romano, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania and member of the National Book Critics Circle, has come under fire for stating that the publishing industry is not racist.
Responding to a National Book Critics Circle Board email, which addressed the lack of black representation in book publishing and the industry’s institutionally racist practices, Romano wrote “Equating American book publishing with American police departments […] is ridiculous.”
“Many of the writers cited in the letter‘s own list would have never been published if not for ecumenical, good-willed white editors and publishers who fought for the publication of black writers,” he wrote.
Additionally, Romano mocked the idea that book publishing is racist, noting the economic realities students face regardless of race. “We professors especially know that accomplished black undergraduates rarely want to go into book publishing because it pays so badly.”
More than 30 members of the National Book Critics Circle have requested that Romano be removed from his position. The Board will move forward “facilitating a special membership meeting” to vote on his removal.
87. At Rutgers University-Camden, a petition recently surfaced to remove a statue of American poet and “Bard of Democracy” Walt Whitman. The genius behind “Leaves of Grass,” Whitman also held racist views about African Americans.
So far, over 3,700 people signed the petition, which states “Rutgers-Camden has been making efforts recently to remove symbols around our campus which continue to perpetuate a racist past.
“The statue of Walt Whitman glorifies a man who we should not hold such a place of honor on our campus.”
Now they're trying to remove a Walt Whitman statue. pic.twitter.com/265gVK2EW5
— Mark Hemingway (@Heminator) July 7, 2020
According to the petition’s author, the Office of the Chancellor at Rutgers-Camden is forming a committee to oversee debate on the statue’s removal.
86. The Sierra Club apologized for “perpetuating white supremacy” on Wednesday and condemned racist comments by its founder John Muir, the naturalist who was one of the most prominent advocates for the preservation of American wilderness.
“Muir was not immune to the racism peddled by many in the early conservation movement,” read a statement from Sierra Club president Michael Brune. “He made derogatory comments about Black people and Indigenous peoples that drew on deeply harmful racist stereotypes, though his views evolved later in his life.”
Various parks across the U.S., as well as monuments, bear Muir’s name.
85. Gary Garrels, the top curator at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, resigned earlier this month after his colleagues objected to his pledge to continue collecting the works of white artists in addition to those of racially diverse artists.
“Don’t worry, we will definitely still continue to collect white artists,” Garrels wrote in an Instagram post about his intention to diversify the artists whose works he selected for the museum.
Garrels was confronted during a July 7 staff meeting and told by a colleague that his post was the equivalent of saying, “All Lives Matter.”
Garrells responded: “I’m sorry, I don’t agree. I think reverse discrimination — —”
His defense was reportedly met with gasps from colleagues. One colleague responded, “He didn’t say that!” in reference to his use of the term “reverse discrimination.” He resigned five days later.
84. Planned Parenthood of Greater New York will remove the name of Margaret Sanger, the founder of the organization, from a clinic in Lower Manhattan. The name hung over the clinic for nearly 20 years.
Sanger notoriously embraced eugenics, a practice adopted by the Nazis, while promoting the widespread use of contraceptives. Back in 2016, Planned Parenthood published a fact sheet distancing the organization from Sanger’s ideology while maintaining support for her ideas on birth control.
“The removal of Margaret Sanger’s name from our building is both a necessary and overdue step to reckon with our legacy and acknowledge Planned Parenthood’s contributions to historical reproductive harm within communities of color,” Karen Seltzer, the chair of Planned Parenthood of New York, said in a statement.
Melanie Roussell Newman, a spokesperson for the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, also released a statement.
“Planned Parenthood, like many other organizations that have existed for a century or more, is reckoning with our history, and working to address historical inequities to better serve patients and our mission.”
83. Trader Joe’s grocery store chain will change its ethnic food packaging after an online petition, signed by more than 1,400 people, described the labels “Trader Ming’s” and “Trader Jose’s” as racist and akin to racial stereotyping.
Initially, Trader Joe’s created the packaging to foster a more inclusive shopping experience for minorities.
“While this approach to product naming may have been rooted in a lighthearted attempt at inclusiveness, we recognize that it may now have the opposite effect — one that is contrary to the welcoming, rewarding customer experience we strive to create every day,” Kenya Friend-Daniel, a spokesperson for Trader Joe’s, said in a statement.
Trader Joe’s also packages Italian and Middle Eastern foods under the brands “Trader Giotto” and “Arabian Joe.”
82. Emory & Henry College in Virginia has announced that the school will consider changing its wasp mascot, because it is indicative of the acronym WASP, which might foster an exclusive and discriminatory environment for students who are not White Anglo-Saxon Protestants.
81. In Denver, Colo., the owner of Kindness Yoga Patrick Harrington was pressured to close down 9 of his studios after several black and transgender yoga teachers complained that he had committed the irredeemable sins of “performative activism” and the “tokenization of Black and brown bodies.”
Kindness Yoga voiced their support for the black and trans community following the wave of Black Lives Matter protests.
Despite financial struggles, which have forced him to put his Denver home on the market, Harrington maintains “My goal is to represent our attempts at being a diverse, inclusive place where people felt like they belonged. I may not say things perfectly … I’m practicing learning how to speak in a way that is more inclusive and caring of diversity.”
80. Early Tuesday morning, vandals defaced City Hall in New York City with anti-police obscenities leading up to the New York City council’s vote on budget and policing cuts.
One vandal, 18-year-old Dominique Tombeau, was arrested for spray painting a statue.
Meanwhile, directly across City Hall, large groups of protesters have gathered with tents.
New graffiti from last night outside the NYC City Hall Occupied Protest pic.twitter.com/eG6tqOhTVm
— Richie🎥McG🍿 (@RichieMcGinniss) June 30, 2020
76, 77, 78,79. The producers of The Simpsons have decided to use only non-white actors to voice non-white characters. The white actor who voices African American character Cleveland in Family Guy also announced he would step down from the role.
Actresses Jenny Slate and Kristen Bell have also announced they will stop voicing biracial characters on two animated TV shows. Slate voiced character Missy on Netflix’s Bigmouth, while Bell voiced Molly Tillerman on the Apple TV+ series Central Park.
“At the start of the show, I reasoned with myself that it was permissible for me to play Missy because her mom is Jewish and White — as am I,” Slate wrote in a statement. “But Missy is also Black, and Black characters on an animated show should be played by Black people…In my playing Missy, I was engaging in an act of erasure of Black people.”
Bell commented, “This is a time to acknowledge our acts of complicity….Casting a mixed race character with a white actress undermines the specificity of the mixed race and Black American experience.
75. A giant cross dedicated to Junipero Serra on Mount Rubidoux in Riverside, Calif., was vandalized on the night of June 28.
Serra founded missions at San Francisco and San Diego that were the first European settlements at those sites. The Spanish priest has been a target of Native American groups and historians who claim Serra sanctioned the oppression of Native Americans.
Graffiti on the cross in Riverside read “Serra was a pedophile,” “Murderer,” and “N8V Land.”
74. A Texas realtor group announced on June 25 that it would stop using the word “master” to describe bedrooms and bathrooms due to connotations of slavery.
The Houston Association of Realtors said it would replace “master” with the word “primary.”
73. The makers of the game Dungeons & Dragons have announced they will eliminate the concept of “evil” races and implement other changes to make the game more sensitive to diversity issues.
One of those changes includes “incorporating sensitivity readers into our creative process, and we will continue to reach out to experts in various fields to help us identify our blind spots.”
“One of the explicit design goals of 5th edition D&D is to depict humanity in all its beautiful diversity by depicting characters who represent an array of ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientations, and beliefs,” the company said in a blog post. “We want everyone to feel at home around the game table and to see positive reflections of themselves within our products.”
72. Five episodes of South Park that include depictions of the prophet Mohammed are not available on the series’s new streaming platform HBO Max.
Three of those episodes were already pulled from the series’s previous streaming home Hulu. South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker received threats after depicting Mohammed in a 2010 episode. Comedy Central censored all depictions of Mohammed in a subsequent episode following the threats.
HBO Max pulled two additional episodes in which the character Cartman tries to get rival series Family Guy canceled, by using a fictional upcoming episode of Family Guy that would feature a depiction of Mohammed.
71. Disney has announced that it will redesign its Splash Mountain ride at Disney World in Florida.
Splash Mountain is a log-flume ride based on a song from the controversial animated movie Song of the South. The movie has been criticized for its rosier-than-accurate portrayal of African American life in the antebellum South. The Splash Mountain ride itself does not include racial stereotypes as part of its structure.
Disney said the ride will be “completely reimagined,” with the theme changed to fit the movie The Princess and the Frog, Disney’s first animated movie featuring a black princess.
70. Country music group The Dixie Chicks announced that they are dropping the word “Dixie” from their name on June 25.
The term “Dixie” has been associated with the South, and is possibly derived from the Mason-Dixon line. “Dixieland” jazz refers to a style of jazz based in New Orleans, La.
The Dixie Chicks thanked a New Zealand band called The Chicks for allowing them to take the same name.
“A sincere and heartfelt thank you goes out to “The Chicks” of NZ for their gracious gesture in allowing us to share their name,” the Dixie Chicks told Pitchfork. “We are honored to co-exist together in the world with these exceptionally talented sisters.”
67, 68, 69. Rioters in Madison, Wisc. attacked a state senator on Tuesday night and toppled a statue of an abolitionist outside the State Capitol, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.
The melee began after residents gathered outside the Capitol to protest the arrest of an African American man, who earlier in the day had entered a restaurant with a baseball bat and berated customers through a megaphone.
Wisconsin state senator Tim Carpenter, a Democrat representing Milwaukee, attempted to film the protest and was attacked by demonstrators.
I took this pic- it got me assaulted & beat up. Punched/kicked in the head, neck, ribs. Maybe concussion, socked in left eye is little blurry, sore neck & ribs. 8-10 people attacked me. Innocent people are going to get killed. Capitol locked- stuck in office.Stop violence nowPlz! pic.twitter.com/Zw2hdfYG66
— Tim Carpenter (@TimCarpenterMKE) June 24, 2020
“Innocent people are going to get killed,” Carpenter wrote on Twitter. “Capitol locked- stuck in office. Stop violence now [please]!”
Demonstrators proceeded to smash windows of the State Capitol and toppled a statue of abolitionist activist Col. Hans Christian Heg, who died fighting for the Union during the Civil War. Demonstrators then decapitated the 100-year-old statute of Heg and threw it into a lake.
“This is absolutely despicable,” commented Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, a Republican. “I am saddened at the cowardice of Madison officials to deal with these thugs.”
Demonstrators also toppled the statue of “Lady Forward,” originally designed by Jean Pond Miner in 1893. At the time, Miner said she sculpted the figure to evoke the progress she felt Wisconsin represented. The state was the first in the U.S. to ratify the 19th Amendment of the Constitution, giving women the right to vote.
Lady Forward statute has been removed by protesters at the Wisconsin State Capitol. Statue is now in the middle of the street. pic.twitter.com/aqgbuEsojl
— Dylan Brogan (@telldylan) June 24, 2020
66. Vandals defaced a statue of Christopher Columbus in Worcester, Mass. on June 23, covering the statue with red paint.
The vandalism follows other instances over the past month in which statues of Columbus have been painted or toppled.
“This is a moment of tremendous social change. It is a time when honest conversations about our history, and about centuries of racial injustices, are absolutely critical,” Worcester city manager Edward M. Augustus Jr. told the local ABC affiliate. “Defacing or destroying public monuments and statues is not the way to have those conversations. Vandalism is never the right solution.”
65. Fortnite, one of the world’s most popular video games, has removed police cars from the game. The cars served only as decorations, not entities players could interact with or ride.
The game’s developer Epic Games has not made any specific comments regarding the removal of police cars, however on June 3 Epic wrote the following on a blog post:
“Recent events are a heavy reminder of ongoing injustices in society, from the denial of basic human rights to the impact of racism both overt and subtle against people of color. The team is eager to move Fortnite forward, but we need to balance the Season 3 launch with time for the team to focus on themselves, their families, and their communities.”
64. NBC Universal is pulling four episodes of 30 Rock which feature characters in blackface after a request from series creators Tina Fey and Robert Carlock.
Season three episode “Believe the Stars” has actress Jane Krakowski wearing blackface. In “Christmas Attack Zone,” Krakowski dresses up as Pittsburgh Steelers player Lynn Swann. And two live episodes, from seasons five and six, respectively feature Jon Hamm in blackface and a racially charged joke about Barack Obama being a “Kenyan liar.”
In a statement, Fey wrote that “‘intent’ is not a free pass for white people to use these images,” and that she’s sorry for “pain they have caused.” “No comedy-loving kid,” Fey continued, “needs to stumble on these tropes and be stung by their ugliness.”
63. Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo has signed an executive order to change the state’s full name from ‘The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations,’ which bears connotations of slavery, to simply ‘Rhode Island.’
The order requires that the designation ‘Rhode Island’ is to be used in future communications, citations, and executive orders. Additionally, executive state agencies must remove the word ‘plantations’ from their websites.
Although the order does not officially and permanently rename the country’s smallest state, Rhode Island’s Senate has moved forward with a referendum calling for a vote to amend their constitution.
Harold Metts, the state’s only black senator, said in a statement, “Whatever the meaning of the term ‘plantations’ in the context of Rhode Island’s history, it carries a horrific connotation when considering the tragic and racist history of our nation.”
62. In Washington, D.C. vandals tried to topple a statue of Andrew Jackson in front of the White House early Monday evening. Additionally, the phrase “Killer” was spray-painted on the statue’s base. As of Monday night, Old Hickory remains standing.
Protestors in Washington, D.C. tearing down a statue of Andrew Jackson, the president responsible for the Trail of Tears and a hero to President Trump. Video courtesy of @jonathanchase_ pic.twitter.com/MH2t4m7MT9
— Julia Ioffe (@juliaioffe) June 23, 2020
The rioters also vandalized St. John’s Episcopal Church on the other side of the park, spray painting “B.H.A.Z.” on its pillars to designate the “Black House Autonomous Zone.”
I have arrived at the Black House Autonomous Zone pic.twitter.com/ohnd0nxqi4
— Robby Soave (@robbysoave) June 23, 2020
61. New York City’s Museum of Natural History will remove a bronze statue of former president Teddy Roosevelt, which has stood at the museum entrance since 1940. The statue depicts Roosevelt riding horseback accompanied by a Native American and an African American.
The Equestrian Statue in front of the Museum has long been controversial for the racial hierarchy it depicts. The Museum has asked that it be moved. More: https://t.co/3hgIWe0fqu pic.twitter.com/m99Bl1EEFT
— American Museum of Natural History (@AMNH) June 21, 2020
“Over the last few weeks, our museum community has been profoundly moved by the ever-widening movement for racial justice that has emerged after the killing of George Floyd,” the museum’s president Ellen V. Futter told the New York Times. “We have watched as the attention of the world and the country has increasingly turned to statues as powerful and hurtful symbols of systemic racism.”
“Simply put, the time has come to move it,” she concluded.
New York City mayor Bill de Blasio also commented, “The American Museum of Natural History has asked to remove the Theodore Roosevelt statue because it explicitly depicts Black and Indigenous people as subjugated and racially inferior. The City supports the Museum’s request. It is the right decision and the right time to remove this problematic statue.”
Teddy Roosevelt’s great-grandson Theodore Roosevelt IV, who serves as a trustee to the museum, approved of the statue’s removal.
“The world does not need statues, relics of another age, that reflect neither the values of the person they intend to honor nor the values of equality and justice. The composition of the Equestrian Statue does not reflect Theodore Roosevelt’s legacy. It is time to move the statue and move forward,” he said in a statement.
60. A group of Jewish and Muslim residents of St. Louis, Mo., are pushing to change the city’s name and remove a statue of St. Louis from a city park.
St. Louis was named after King Louis IX, the only French monarch canonized by the Catholic church. Louis IX was an anti-Semite who oversaw the burning of 12,000 copies of the Talmud, confiscated Jewish property and used it to fund crusades against Islamic kingdoms in 1248 and 1270.
“St. Louis has a large and vibrant Jewish and Muslim community and it’s an outright disrespect for those who are part of these faith communities to have to live in a city named after a man committed to the murder of their co religionists,” reads a petition on Change.org. “[We] ask all people of good faith committed to the modern values of equity and coexistence to sign this petition to rename the City of St. Louis to something more suitable and indicative of our values.”
The petition was co-sponsored by Ben Poremba, an Israeli-American restaurateur, and Umar Lee and Moji Sidiqi of the group Muslims For a Greater St. Louis. Lee is a descendant of Confederate general Robert E. Lee.
59. Monmouth University in New Jersey has decided to remove a plaque with Woodrow Wilson’s name from the Woodrow Wilson Hall, a mansion built on campus in 1929.
The university’s Board of Trustees had voted in 2016 to retain the name despite Wilson’s support for racist policies including the segregation of African Americans in public spaces.
“Wilson was a controversial politician, and I think it has heightened awareness in 2020 about some of his racist policies,” Monmouth president Patrick Leahy said.
Leahy and university board chairman Michael Plodwick wrote in a statement, “Removing [Wilson’s]…connects the centerpiece of our campus more accurately to our historical roots and eliminates a symbolic barrier to the important work of creating a truly welcoming and inclusive space in the Great Hall.”
58. Michael Korenbeg, chairman of the University of British Columbia’s Board of Governors, resigned on June 20 after students discovered that he had “liked” Twitter posts by President Trump and right-wing figures disparaging Black Lives Matter and Antifa.
A group called UBC Students Against Bigotry first discovered Korenberg’s Twitter “likes.”
There's the Republican Party, Republican officials, Mike Pence, Team Trump, Donald Jr, even the Racist-in-Chief himself — sometimes several tweets a day. Pictured here are just a few of them.
— UBC Students Against Bigotry (@ubc_students) June 18, 2020
“I wasn’t actually familiar with the fact that people can look at my Twitter account, so I do regret that,” Korenberg told UBC student newspaper The Ubyssey. The former chairman said he had liked the tweets in order to save them for viewing at a later time, but on Saturday announced his resignation.
“Over the past two weeks some articles/statements that I ‘liked’ on Twitter supported regressive voices and took aim at thousands of brave individuals who are standing up against racism, discrimination, and hatred,” Korenberg wrote in a statement. “To be clear, I support Black Lives Matter and I support the de-racialization of our educational institutions and our country. But I accept that, in liking these social media posts, I damaged what I support and that I hurt people.”
Today I stepped down as Chair of the Board of Governors of UBC. I owe all students, faculty and staff and all those who stand against all forms of discrimination, an apology. I do so with all my heart. pic.twitter.com/tDczgwvmbp
— Michael Korenberg (@Mikey4493) June 21, 2020
54, 55, 56, 57. Four statues in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park were toppled or vandalized on June 19.
Those statues represented Ulysses S. Grant, the Union general who defeated the Confederacy; Francis Scott Key, the writer of the Star Spangled Banner; St. Junipero Serra, the leader of Spanish missions that helped settle California; and Miguel de Cervantes, writer of Don Quixote.
Grant owned one slave during his lifetime, whom the general freed before the Civil War. Grant went on to support the 15th Amendment giving African Americans the right to vote, and during his presidency signed legislation designed to clamp down on white supremacist terrorism in the postbellum South, which was driven in part by the newly-formed Ku Klux Klan.
Activists just toppled the Junipero Serra statue in Golden Gate Park here in San Francisco
Now they’re onto Francis Scott Key, slave owner and writer of the Star Spangled Banner pic.twitter.com/Ykv0hFMZvK
— Joe Rivano Barros (@jrivanob) June 20, 2020
Francis Scott Key owned several slaves and as a lawyer sometimes argued against the abolitionist cause, although he also gave free legal services to slaves seeking their freedom. Serra is blamed by Native American groups for the oppression of tribes in California.
And Francis Scott Key is down, *right* as a police officer says “you’ve made your point, we’re not gonna let you pull this statue down,” with the crowd cheering and shouting “next one!” pic.twitter.com/8sbjmhMRXf
— Joe Rivano Barros (@jrivanob) June 20, 2020
It is unclear why vandals defaced the statue of Cervantes, who himself was captured by pirates and spent about five years in captivity in the Ottoman Empire.
“Every dollar we spend cleaning up this vandalism takes funding away from actually supporting our community, including our African-American community,” San Francisco mayor London Breed said in a statement. “I say this not to defend any particular statue or what it represents, but to recognize that when people take action in the name of my community, they should actually involve us.”
Breed went on, “I have asked the Arts Commission, the Human Rights Commission, and the Recreation and Parks Department to work with the community to evaluate our public art and its intersection with our country’s racist history.”
53. The maker of Eskimo Pie ice cream announced on June 19 that it would change the name of the brand.
Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream said the company had been considering the change for some time. The company will also change the Eskimo Pie logo, which features a picture of an Eskimo boy.
“We are committed to being a part of the solution on racial equality, and recognize [that] the term is derogatory,” Dreyer’s head of marketing said in a statement. “This move is part of a larger review to ensure our company and brands reflect our people values.”
52. In Windsor, Vt. a principal was placed on administrative leave for writing on Facebook, “I firmly believe that Black Lives Matter, but I DO NOT agree with the coercive measures taken to get to this point across; some of which are falsified in an attempt to prove a point.”
Tiffany Riley had been the K-12 principal at the Windsor School for 15 years.
A group of graduates penned a fierce response, denouncing her remarks. “The ignorance, prejudice, and lack of judgement in these statements are utterly contrary to the values we espouse as a school board and district,” the letter said.
“It’s clear that the community has lost faith in her ability to lead,” Mount Ascutney School District Superintendent David Baker said. “They don’t see any way that she’s going to go forward as the principal of that building given those comments and that statement.”
51. Mars Inc., the parent company of Uncle Ben’s rice, has decided to “evolve” the brand following a similar announcement from Quaker Oats, the company that owns Aunt Jemima’s maple syrup and pancake mix.
Critics of the Uncle Ben brand have noted that in the Jim Crow South whites often referred to blacks as “boy” or “uncle” in order to avoid calling them “sir” or “Mr.”
“Racism has no place in society. We stand in solidarity with the Black community, our Associates and our partners in the fight for social justice.
“We know to make the systemic change needed, it’s going to take a collective effort from all of us — individuals, communities and organizations of all sizes around the world,” Mars said in a statement.
50. The Southeastern Conference released a statement warning that future SEC championships may not be held in Mississippi unless the state flag, which features the Confederate “Stars and Bars,” is changed.
SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey released a statement.
— Southeastern Conference (@SEC) June 18, 2020
University of Mississippi Chancellor Glenn Boyce and Vice Chancellor for Intercollegiate Athletics Keith Carter also released a statement.
A message from Chancellor Glenn Boyce and Vice Chancellor for Intercollegiate Athletics Keith Carter. pic.twitter.com/gqJxxj6ca6
— Ole Miss Athletics (@OleMissSports) June 19, 2020
49. A group of New York City council members formally asked Mayor Bill de Blasio to remove a statue of Thomas Jefferson from City Hall.
“His words are ‘all men are created equal’ but they were not matched by his action, which included the ability to sell, buy, mortgage and lease human beings.
“He believed black people to be racially inferior, said black Americans and white Americans could not live peacefully side by side, and he fathered as many as six children with a woman he enslaved,” Councilwoman Debi Rose said of the Founding Father.
A spokeswoman for de Blasio said they were reviewing the request.
48. University of Florida President Kent Fuchs announced that the UF Band and the university athletic department will discontinue the legendary “Gator Bait” cheer at future sporting events.
“While I know of no evidence of racism associated with our “Gator Bait” cheer at UF sporting events, there is horrific historic racist imagery associated with the phrase. Accordingly, University Athletics and the Gator Band will discontinue the use of the cheer,” President Fuchs said in a statement.
Another step toward positive change against racismhttps://t.co/O8uGuOjB2P
— FLORIDA (@UF) June 18, 2020
47. YouTube removed a Heritage Foundation video featuring a former transgender-identifying woman Walt Heyer. A contributor for The Federalist, Heyer expressed regrets about his life at a panel called the “Summit on Protecting Children from Sexualization,” which was highlighted in the video.
The Heritage Foundation is now fighting for the video to be republished.
“I said that children suffering from gender dysphoria should not be encouraged to try experimental hormones in surgery, and I stand by that statement,” Heyer said in response to the controversy, doubling down on his initial remarks.
46. In Portland, Ore. a century old statue of George Washington was toppled and vandalized Thursday night. Perpetrators spray-painted demeaning messages such as “White fragility,” “Damn White Men,” and “1619,” which is a reference to The New York Times‘s ahistorical initiative on slavery and the American Founding.
Portland wakes up to see what antifa did overnight. A century old statue of George Washington was toppled & set on fire with an American flag. “White fragility,” “Damn white men” & other messages are written on the moment. On the ground nearby: “Defund white men.” pic.twitter.com/zjrsZHJC9o
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) June 19, 2020
45. The 11-Worth Cafe in Omaha, Neb. shut its doors after 44 years of operation, following two days of protests outside the restaurant.
The protests started after the owner’s son made allegedly-racist Facebook posts calling for more lethal force against rioters at George Floyd demonstrations. One post criticized those who “mass punish” white people. Protesters were also incensed that a dish served at the restaurant was called the “Robert E. Lee.”
“Our customers and staff are of the utmost importance to our family. The verbal abuse, taunting and having to be escorted to and from their cars by police and security officers for their safety for two straight days was more than we could watch them endure,” the owner wrote announcing the closure. “We have had numerous threats to all of our family members via social media and two incidents at two of our family homes where the police had to be called.”
44. A professor at the Indiana University School of Medicine apologized to students for including the phrase “I can’t breathe” in a question on an exam.
“I can’t breathe” became a slogan for Black Lives Matter demonstrators after the killing of Eric Garner, during which a New York City officer placed Garner in a chokehold. George Floyd, whose death during arrest by Minneapolis officers sparked mass demonstrations across the country, also uttered the phrase as an officer kneeled on his neck.
Daniel Corson-Knowles, assistant professor of clinical medicine, told students “We understand that the context in which this phrase was used resulted in a very painful trigger for many of you.” Corson-Knowles said he would look into materials on anti-bias training and microagressions.
The exam question, published by Reason, reads “A patient who missed dialysis suddenly becomes pale, diaphoretic, and screams, ‘I can’t breathe!’ You glance at the monitor and notice the following rhythm. You are unable to palpate a pulse and initiate immediate CPR. The most appropriate next step in therapy is…”
43. A Catholic chaplain at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology was made to resign after sending an email to the school’s Catholic community on June 7 noting that George Floyd had “not lived a virtuous life.”
“While Fr. Moloney’s comments should not reflect on the entirety of his priestly ministry, they nonetheless were wrong and by his resignation he accepts the hurt they have caused,” archdiocese officials said.
Moloney agreed to step down just two days after sending the email, which noted that Floyd’s killing was unjustified, but questioned whether it was motivated by racism, the Boston Globe reported.
“In the wake of George Floyd’s death, most people in the country have framed this as an act of racism,” Moloney’s email read. “I don’t think we know that. Many people have claimed that racism is a major problem in police forces. I don’t think we know that.”
Suzy Nelson, dean of student life at MIT, characterized Moloney’s comments as “deeply disturbing” in an email to the student body.
“By devaluing and disparaging George Floyd’s character, Father Moloney’s message failed to acknowledge the dignity of each human being and the devastating impact of systemic racism,” Nelson wrote.
Moloney said he felt his email was misunderstood in a statement to the Globe.
“I regret what happened, I regret it was misunderstood, I regret that [it] became difficult for me to be a voice for Christ on campus,” Moloney said. “The whole thing went down in a way that I wish were otherwise.”
42. San Diego Gas & Electric fired an employee after a stranger accused him of making a “white power” symbol.
Emmanuel Cafferty was photographed driving his SDG&E truck with his hand hanging out the window in what appears to be an “OK” symbol made with the first finger and thumb, a symbol that has been used by white supremacists but does not carry that connotation for most Americans. The stranger who photographed Cafferty uploaded the picture to Twitter, and while the post has since been deleted, SDG&E has fired Cafferty.
“When my supervisor said that I was being accused of doing a white supremacist gesture, that was baffling,” Cafferty told the San Diego NBC affiliate. “I don’t know how long it’s going to take me to get over this, but to lose your dream job for playing with your fingers, that’s a hard pill to swallow.”
41. Marvel apologized for posting a picture of Captain America on its Twitter account, saying it was “insensitive” to do so.
“We’ve heard your response to our recent post and agree that now was not the appropriate time to share this content from our game,” the company wrote. “We apologize for being insensitive.”
40. The iconic American food company Quaker Oats announced Wednesday that it will retire its “Aunt Jemima” maple syrup logo, which it has used since 1889, because the imagery and name is “based on a racial stereotype.”
“While work has been done over the years to update the brand in a manner intended to be appropriate and respectful, we realize those changes are not enough,” Quaker’s chief marketing officer said in a statement.
The packaging change, which was first reported by NBC News, will take effect at the end of the year and a name change will follow soon thereafter.
39. In Berkeley, Calif., the Berkeley Unified School District board unanimously passed the “Resolution in Support of Black Lives Matter” after a push from Black Lives Matter activists. The resolution will ultimately rename Jefferson and Washington Elementary Schools, which were designated in honor of the Founding Fathers.
“Noting that Black Lives Matter protests have swept the nation as demonstrators demand justice in response to the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and far too many other Black Americans to list, the Resolution In Support of Black Lives Matter includes the following action steps: Initiate a School Renaming Process for Jefferson and Washington Elementary Schools in accordance with the District’s policies,” Berkeley Unified School District said in a press release.
The resolution also calls for more resources to train teachers to identity racial inequity in classrooms.
38. Netflix has removed an episode of the 2015 sketch comedy series “W/Bob and David” from its platform. Co-created by “Better Call Saul” actor Bob Odenkirk and comedian David Cross, the one season series features a sketch in which Cross’s fictional character wears blackface.
The move comes one day after Cross took to Twitter to defend the episode, titled “Know Your Rights”:
Hey all, Netflix is going to pull this sketch from With Bob & David because the ridiculous, foolish character I play puts on "black face" at one point. The point of this was to underscore the absurdity…well, here's your last chance to figure it outhttps://t.co/JkMBWS2wAR
— david cross✍ (@davidcrosss) June 15, 2020
Odenkirk also chimed in:
we considered every choice we made doing our show, and always aimed to make you laugh and think, and never make an obvious or easy point…that very much includes this sketch. Our comedy is always about the human element, never about making a political point https://t.co/1yOKa417T8
— Mr. Bob Odenkirk (@mrbobodenkirk) June 16, 2020
37. Dartmouth College will remove a weather vane from their main library depicting college founder Eleazar Wheelock lecturing a pipe-smoking, rum-drinking Native American. Last week, Native American students and professors, who complained that the weather vane was “racist,” circulated a petition for its removal.
“It is clear that the images portrayed on the weather vane do not reflect Dartmouth’s values,” college President Phil Hanlon said.
The weather vane is a “patronizing and stereotypical depiction of Native peoples,” a Dartmouth Native American student group claimed, and it “flaunts a racist depiction in the face of all the meaningful and beautiful progress that has been made.”
Hanover, N.H., resident and Dartmouth alum David Vincelette, who initially posted the petition, said of the weather vane: “It’s just a cruel mockery of Native Americans.”
36. A man was shot in Albequerque, N.M., on Monday night as rioters, who were trying to tear down a conquistador statute, clashed with members of the New Mexico Civil Guard, a local militia not affiliated with the government. The injured man’s condition was unknown as of Tuesday morning.
In a video of the scene, rioters can be seen trying unsuccessfully to topple the statue using a rope. A scuffle ensues as several volleys are fired. A man in a blue shirt, who someone in the crowd identifies as a cop, can then be seen fleeing the scene as people shout “we’re going to f***ing kill you” and “get his license plate.”
“The shooting tonight was a tragic, outrageous and unacceptable act of violence and it has no place in our city,” Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller said Tuesday morning in a press release.
Albuquerque Police Chief Michael Geier blamed unnamed “vigilante groups” for inciting the violence.
“We are receiving reports about vigilante groups possibly instigating this violence. If this is true [we] will be holding them accountable to the fullest extent of the law, including federal hate group designation and prosecution,” Geier wrote in a Monday night tweet.
Geier added that the statue will be removed from the site and placed in storage “until the appropriate civic institutions can determine next steps.”
35. University of Virginia athletic director Carla Williams released a statement on June 15 announcing alterations to the school’s recently-adopted “V-Sabre” logo, aspects of which were perceived as racist due to their association with the school’s use of slave labor.
“At the time of the marks unveiling, it was noted that ‘detail was added to the grip of the sabres that mimics the design of the serpentine walls found on Grounds,'” Williams said. “After the release of our new logos on April 24th, I was made aware of the negative connotation between the serpentine walls and slavery. I was not previously aware of the historical perspective indicating the original eight-foot-high walls were constructed to mask the institution of slavery and enslaved laborers from public view.”
“Over the last few weeks, I have worked to better educate myself and that education will continue,”she added. “There was no intent to cause harm, but we did, and for that I apologize to those who bear the pain of slavery in our history. As such, we have redesigned the logos to remove that detail. All other aspects of the logos will remain the same.”
34. Boston mayor Marty Walsh is considering removing a statue of Abraham Lincoln with a freed slave, after a resident filed an online petition that has garnered over 7,000 signatures.
The statue shows Lincoln standing with an arm raised above the freed slave, who is kneeling.
“It says that it’s a statue that’s supposed to represent freedom. But, to me, it represents submissiveness,” Tory Bullock, who started the petition, told Boston’s local ABC affiliate. “It represents: ‘Know your place, because that’s where you belong.'”
Mayor Walsh is “willing to engage in a dialogue with the community about [the statue’s] future in Boston,” a City Hall spokesperson said.
33. Demonstrators toppled a statue of Thomas Jefferson in front of the eponymous high school in Portland, Ore., on June 14, Fox 12 reported. Graffiti reading “slave owner” and “George Floyd 8:46” was spray-painted on the statue’s pedestal.
— Bonnie Silkman KPTV (@BonnieSilkman) June 15, 2020
A group called “Rose City Justice” led a march from the school to Alberta Park in northeast Portland to protest the death of George Floyd. After demonstrators toppled the statue, the march carried on relatively smoothly until demonstrators began throwing objects including glass bottles and what police believe was a “commercial grade firework.” Officers proceeded to declare a civil disturbance and dispersed the crowds.
32. Vandals spray-painted the word “crook” on a statue of Julius Caesar in Zottegem, Belgium, early Monday morning. The spear held in one hand of the statue was also torn off.
It is not clear what the vandals’ motive was, although regional authorities do not believe the vandalism is connected to George Floyd demonstrations that have sparked protests even in Europe.
“We will estimate more precisely on Monday the extent of the damage and the repairs to be carried out. These will be at the expense of the perpetrators,” Zottegem mayor Jenne De Potter said in comments to the Brussels Times.
31. The National Parks Service has confirmed that it is working to clean graffiti from the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier of the American Revolution in Philadelphia. Vandals had spray-painted the words “committed genocide” on the memorial.
A Philadelphia branch of the Parks Service said that professional conservators were needed to clean the graffiti because the memorial is made of limestone and is “susceptible to pitting and discoloration.”
30. Joyce Kenner, principal of the selective Chicago high school Whitney Young, is facing calls for her resignation over her statements on the George Floyd demonstrations and her leadership more generally. Kenner, who is black, had previously worked for the Reverend Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow PUSH Coalition.
The principal has called for students of Whitney Young not to join in violent acts should they occur at George Floyd demonstrations, although she has voiced support for students who choose to join peaceful protests. Kenner has also resisted calls to ban Chicago police from city schools, citing the 1999 Columbine High School shooting.
An online petition claims that Kenner “silenced student activists speaking against all forms of injustice. Her silence and her enabling of the systematic oppression that her black and low-income students face should be condemned.”
“Nobody is going to push me out. I’m not resigning. I still have a lot of work to do for my African American students,” Kenner told the Chicago Tribune on June 13.
29. Senior vice president of ABC News Barbara Fedida has been placed on administrative leave after a probe into her alleged misconduct, which had made her infamous at the network. She had also been subject to an HR probe in 2016 following dozens of complaints.
Multiple sources claim her bad behavior includes making racist comments to subordinates. During contract negotiations with “Good Morning America” anchor Robin Roberts, Fedida said that the star wasn’t at the network to “pick cotton.” Ironically, Fedida heads ABC’s hiring and diversity program.
“There are deeply disturbing allegations in this story that we need to investigate, and we have placed Barbara Fedida on administrative leave while we conduct a thorough and complete investigation,” ABC News said in a statement.
28. In the maritime city of Liverpool, England, road signs on the famous Penny Lane were defaced with black spray paint, and several signs were tagged with the phrase: “Racist.” James Penny was a wealthy slave trader, however Liverpool’s International Slave Museum was not certain whether the street was in fact named after Penny.
“More research is needed,” said a spokesperson for the museum.
Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson said the vandalism “does nothing to further advance the argument and the debate around Black Lives Matter here in Liverpool.” And local resident Emmett O’Neill, who helped scrub away the graffiti, thought the gesture was “idiotic.”
27. UKTV, a BBC-owned streaming service, removed an episode of the famous British sitcom Fawlty Towers. First broadcasted in 1975, the episode contains strong racist language, racial slurs, and a bigoted character.
“We aren’t commenting on individual titles,” a UKTV spokesperson said. “However, we regularly review our programmes, and make edits, add warnings and make schedule changes where necessary to ensure that our channels meet the expectations of our audience.”
The BBC will also continue scrutinizing streaming platforms to guarantee shows and movies comply with their modern editorial standards.
26. A statue of Robert the Bruce, the legendary King of Scotland who ruled from 1306 to 1329, was vandalized last night in Stirling, Scotland. On the statue itself the graffiti reads: “Racist King. BLM. Black Lives Matter.” Nearby on a stone rotunda, perpetrators spray-painted the phrase: “Robert was a racist, bring down the statue.”
“We are very disappointed by the vandalism of the iconic Bruce statue at Bannockburn and the A listed rotunda,” Stuart Maxwell said in a statement. Maxwell serves as the General Manager for Edinburgh & East at the National Trust for Scotland.
Meanwhile, Assistant Chief Constable Kenny MacDonald has called for a full criminal investigation and increased security: “Police officers will be providing additional patrolling around such monuments and statues in the coming days to deter such criminality.”
25. The Wing CEO and founder Audrey Gelman resigned after employees organized a digital walkout to support black and brown workers. The women’s social club and networking site had failed to live up to its purported mission of supporting intersectional feminism.
— Alex Covington (@AlexNoelleCov) June 11, 2020
A representative has released the following statement: “The past three months have brought change to our society, our culture, our business and our team in ways no one could have imagined. The Wing remains a vital resource for thousands of women navigating their path to success. But the moment calls for a rethinking of how we meet their needs moving forward and for new leadership that can guide The Wing into the future.”
24. A statue of Philip Schuyler, the Revolutionary War general and father-in-law of Alexander Hamilton, will be removed from its place outside the Albany, N.Y., city hall because Schuyler was a slaveowner.
Albany mayor Kathy Sheehan ordered the statue’s removal on Thursday to a location as yet to be determined. Schuyler took part in planning the Continental Army’s defense of Saratoga, where American forces defeated the British and marked a turning point in the Revolutionary War.
“Scores of community members have reached out to my office requesting the removal of the statue of former slave owner Gen. Philip Schuyler and I thank those residents for making their voices heard,” Sheehan said in a statement. “Our Chief Diversity Officer first raised this issue to me last year and we discussed opportunities to engage the community in a conversation about its removal.”
23. In Richmond, Va., the former capital of the Confederacy, protestors toppled a century-old statue of Confederate President Jefferson Davis which resided on the city’s Monument Avenue. The bronze statue had been vandalized throughout the week.
Protesters in Richmond have pulled down a statue of Jefferson Davis, the former president of the Confederacy pic.twitter.com/Myl0UfDSNI
— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) June 11, 2020
Meanwhile, Kentucky State Senator Chris McDaniel has filed a bill to have the statue of Jefferson Davis lawfully removed from the Kentucky Capitol Rotunda. African American military hero and master diver Carl Brashear will replace the Confederate President.
State senator proposes replacing Jefferson Davis statue with black Navy war hero Carl Brashear, ahead of possible state commission vote to remove the statue from Kentucky Capitol Rotunda tomorrow: https://t.co/rrTXZJLynQ via @courierjournal
— Joe Sonka 😐 (@joesonka) June 11, 2020
On Capitol Hill, Speaker Nancy Pelosi is pushing for the removal of 11 Confederate statues which currently reside in the National Statuary Hall Collection.
22. The country music group Lady Antebellum has changed its name to “Lady A” because of what its members said were associations to the pre-Civil War experience of slavery.
“We named our band after the Southern ‘Antebellum’ style home where we took our first photos,” the band said in a statement. “But we are regretful and embarrassed to say that we did not take into account the associations that weigh down this word referring to the period of history before the Civil War, which includes slavery. We are deeply sorry for the hurt this has caused and for anyone who has felt unsafe, unseen, or unvalued.”
View this post on Instagram
Dear Fans, As a band, we have strived for our music to be a refuge…inclusive of all. We’ve watched and listened more than ever these last few weeks, and our hearts have been stirred with conviction, our eyes opened wide to the injustices, inequality and biases Black women and men have always faced and continue to face everyday. Now, blindspots we didn’t even know existed have been revealed. After much personal reflection, band discussion, prayer and many honest conversations with some of our closest Black friends and colleagues, we have decided to drop the word “antebellum” from our name and move forward as Lady A, the nickname our fans gave us almost from the start. When we set out together almost 14 years ago, we named our band after the southern “antebellum” style home where we took our first photos. As musicians, it reminded us of all the music born in the south that influenced us…Southern Rock, Blues, R&B, Gospel and of course Country. But we are regretful and embarrassed to say that we did not take into account the associations that weigh down this word referring to the period of history before The Civil War, which includes slavery. We are deeply sorry for the hurt this has caused and for anyone who has felt unsafe, unseen or unvalued. Causing pain was never our hearts’ intention, but it doesn’t change the fact that indeed, it did just that. So today, we speak up and make a change. We hope you will dig in and join us. We feel like we have been Awakened, but this is just one step. There are countless more that need to be taken. We want to do better. We are committed to examining our individual and collective impact and making the necessary changes to practice antiracism. We will continue to educate ourselves, have hard conversations and search the parts of our hearts that need pruning—to grow into better humans, better neighbors. Our next outward step will be a donation to the Equal Justice Initiative through LadyAID. Our prayer is that if we lead by example…with humility, love, empathy and action…we can be better allies to those suffering from spoken and unspoken injustices, while influencing our children & generations to come.
However, the band’s decision to rename seems to have backfired already:
Lady Antebellum is now “Lady A” — but so is a black blues singer who’s performed music under the name for 20 years. “For them to not even reach out is pure privilege,” says the woman with the original moniker https://t.co/yl0FCVVE0B pic.twitter.com/67tEmlQMqO
— Rolling Stone (@RollingStone) June 12, 2020
21. A statue of Matthias Baldwin, an abolitionist activist who built a successful manufacturing business in Philadelphia, was defaced in the city’s Matthias Baldwin Park on June 10. The statue was doused in paint by demonstrators, with the word “colonizer” spray painted on the pedestal.
Antifa defaced the statue to Matthias Baldwin in Philadelphia with the words "COLONIZER" and "MURDERER." Baldwin fought against slavery, fought for black voting rights, and built schools for black children. pic.twitter.com/9RMksuRkHP
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) June 11, 2020
Baldwin, who moved to Philadelphia from New Jersey in the early 1800’s, advocated for the enfranchisement of African Americans during Pennsylvania’s 1837 Constitutional Convention, and made regular contributions to a school for African American children in Philadelphia.
“He was BLM [Black Lives Matter] before there was a slogan,” Joe Walsh, a member of the Friends of Matthias Baldwin Park, told National Review.
20. J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter book series, has defended herself against accusations of anti-transgender animus.
“Huge numbers of women are justifiably terrified by the trans activists; I know this because so many have got in touch with me to tell their stories. They’re afraid of doxxing, of losing their jobs or their livelihoods, and of violence,” Rowling wrote on her website on Wednesday. “I refuse to bow down to a movement that I believe is doing demonstrable harm in seeking to erode ‘woman’ as a political and biological class and offering cover to predators like few before it.”
Rowling had criticized the use of the phrase “people who menstruate” in place of women.
‘People who menstruate.’ I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?
Opinion: Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate https://t.co/cVpZxG7gaA
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) June 6, 2020
The author has previously stated her opposition to the idea that “gender” is not grounded in biological sex.
At Hachette UK, a leading publishing group, five employees working on Rowling’s latest book The Ickabog expressed concern about the project following the author’s comments on transgender people and biological sex.
In a statement, however, Hachette remained adamant in their decision to publish Rowling’s book while upholding the rights of their authors and employees to express differing opinions.
“We are proud to publish J K Rowling’s children’s fairytale The Ickabog. Freedom of speech is the cornerstone of publishing. We fundamentally believe that everyone has the right to express their own thoughts and beliefs. That’s why we never comment on our authors’ personal views and we respect our employees’ right to hold a different view.
“We will never make our employees work on a book whose content they find upsetting for personal reasons, but we draw a distinction between that and refusing to work on a book because they disagree with an author’s views outside their writing, which runs contrary to our belief in free speech.”
19. A statue of Christopher Columbus in front of the Minnesota State Capitol in Minneapolis was toppled on June 10 by protesters from the American Indian Movement, a militant civil rights group. Minnesota officials, including Governor Tim Walz, were made aware of AIM’s initiative to topple the statue but did not force the demonstrators to back down.
Another statue of Christopher Columbus located in the eponymous park in Boston was beheaded on June 10, and the statue has subsequently been moved into storage. In 2015 an unknown vandal covered the same statue in red paint and wrote “Black Lives Matter” on its pedestal.
“Certainly we don’t condone any vandalism here in the city of Boston, and that needs to stop” Mayor Marty Walsh told reporters.
In Ohio, Columbus State Community College will remove its statue of Christopher Columbus:
— WSYX ABC 6 (@wsyx6) June 16, 2020
On June 23, vandals dumped red paint over a Columbus statue in Worcester, Mass.
.@WorcesterDPW is power washing the Christopher Columbus statue (at Union Station), after it was vandalized overnight. @WorcesterPD says 2 male suspects used red paint & spray paint. The suspects fled. #wcvb #Worcester pic.twitter.com/J9UJkPpuZH
— Todd Kazakiewich (@ToddKazakiewich) June 23, 2020
18. HBO Max announced on June 9 that it would temporarily remove Gone with the Wind from its platform. The film’s depiction of African Americans in the antebellum South is far rosier than is historically accurate.
The announcement came after publication of an op-ed in the Los Angeles times by John Ridley, screenwriter of 12 Years a Slave, who called for a temporary suspension of Gone with the Wind in light of the George Floyd demonstrations. It was not clear if HBO’s decision was directly linked to the op-ed.
17. A&E permanently canceled one of the highest-rated shows on cable Live P.D. after it was placed on hiatus following George Floyd’s death.
The network issued a statement to Deadline: “This is a critical time in our nation’s history, and we have made the decision to cease production on Live P.D. Going forward, we will determine if there is a clear pathway to tell the stories of both the community and the police officers whose role it is to serve them. And with that, we will be meeting with community and civil rights leaders as well as police departments.”
Live P.D. host Dan Abrams, who was more optimistic than his audience, took to Twitter the night before the show was canceled.
To all of you asking whether #LivePD coming back. . .The answer is yes. All of us associated with the show are as committed to it as ever. We are still discussing some specifics but I want to assure the #LivePDNation that we are not abandoning you.
— Dan Abrams (@danabrams) June 10, 2020
Here’s his response to the cancellation:
Shocked & beyond disappointed about this. To the loyal #LivePDNation please know I, we, did everything we could to fight for you, and for our continuing effort at transparency in policing. I was convinced the show would go on. . More to come. . .https://t.co/WWh7fDrig2
— Dan Abrams (@danabrams) June 11, 2020
16. Paramount Network pulled Cops from the air following George Floyd’s death and has decided to drop the program completely. The network picked up the reality show after its 25 season run on Fox.
“Cops is not on the Paramount Network and we don’t have any current or future plans for it to return,” a network spokesperson said.
JUST IN: #COPS has officially been CANCELLED off @paramountnet after our conversation with them this week and after millions of our members raised their voices to say stop #NormalizingInjustice! https://t.co/OKdAScgW3g
— ColorOfChange (@ColorOfChange) June 10, 2020
15. Four cast members of the Bravo reality TV series Vanderpump Rules were fired on June 9 following accusations of racism.
A black former cast member said stars Stassi Schroeder and Kristen Doute called the police on her for crimes the cast member did not commit.
“My actions were not racially driven, [but] I am now completely aware of how my privilege blinded me from the reality of law enforcement’s treatment of the black community, and how dangerous my actions could have been to her,” Doute wrote in an apology.
14. Greg Glassman, CEO and founder of CrossFit, announced his resignation from the company on June 9 following backlash over his comments about the Black Lives Matter movement and the killing of George Floyd.
On a Zoom call with staff, Glassman told company officials that “we’re not mourning for George Floyd.”
“Can you tell me why I should mourn for him? Other than that it’s the white thing to do,” Glassman said in a recording obtained by BuzzFeed. The CEO also suggested that Floyd was killed by Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin to cover up money laundering occurring at a club that employed both men.
The comments caused an outpouring of criticism on social media, as well as pushback from Crossfit employees.
“I created a rift in the CrossFit community and unintentionally hurt many of its members,” Glassman said in an apology. “I cannot let my behavior stand in the way of HQ’s or affiliates’ missions. They are too important to jeopardize.”
13. A number of prominent academics and economists, including Paul Krugman, have called on the University of Chicago to fire professor of economics Harald Uhlig over a tweet criticizing Black Lives Matter.
“Yet another privileged white man who evidently can’t control his urge to belittle the concerns of those less fortunate,” Krugman wrote of Uhlig.
12. David Collum, director of undergraduate studies at Cornell University’s chemistry department, announced on June 8 that he would step down from the position after facing a torrent of online criticism over a tweet criticizing the 75-year-old protester who was knocked to the ground by Buffalo police during a George Floyd protest.
“The guy needed to give that cop space. Wasn’t brutality; the guy was feeble. The cracked skull (which I agree was the likely event) was self-inflicted,” Collum’s tweet read in part.
The tweet went viral after Hollywood actor Kumail Nanjiani, a star of the HBO series Silicon Valley, retweeted it. The professor then faced backlash from students and staff.
However, Collum said that the Cornell chemistry department had already been planning to bring in a new head of undergraduate studies. Collum has been a professor at Cornell since 1980 and has not been fired from the chemistry department entirely.
11. MTV fired reality TV star Dee Nguyen from its show The Challenge after what the network called “offensive comments on the Black Lives Matter movement.” Nguyen retaliated against another Twitter user for suggesting she didn’t take the Black Lives Matter movement seriously enough, with the user writing “people are dying.”
“People die every f***ing day,” Nguyen responded. “U don’t know me or what I do. I suggest you wake the f*** up and get off social media.”
Nguyen apologized after backlash, writing “I am sorry for the insensitive tweet I posted earlier. I was being defensive and not speaking from my heart. But there’s no excuse.”
10. Adam Rapoport, editor-in-chief of Bon Appetit food magazine, resigned on June 8 after a 2004 photo of him dressed as a “Puerto Rican” for Halloween resurfaced on Twitter. The picture was taken with Rapoport’s wife, Simone Shubuck, who posted the photo on Instagram in 2013 and referred to Rapoport as “Papi” in the caption.
Rapoport wrote on Instagram that he needed to “reflect on the work that I need to do as a human being and to allow Bon Appétit to get to a better place.” Rapoport had worked with publisher Conde Nast for over 20 years.
9. Christene Barberich, editor and co-founder of women’s lifestyle magazine Refinery29, resigned after current and former staffers alleged that they faced discrimination in the workplace.
“I worked at Refinery29 for less than nine months due to a toxic company culture where white women’s egos ruled the near nonexistent editorial processes,” writer Ashley Ford wrote on Twitter. “One of the founders consistently confused myself and one our full-time front desk associates & pay disparity was atrocious.”
“I will be stepping aside in my role at R29 to help diversify our leadership in editorial and ensure this brand and the people it touches can spark a new defining chapter,” Ms. Barberich wrote in a post on Instagram.
Nancy Dubuc, head of Vice Media, which acquired Refinery29 in October, said Barberich’s exit was “an acceleration of a conversation Christene and I have been having since Vice’s acquisition of R29 and she asked that we make the change immediately over the past few days.”
8. James Bennet, opinion editor at the New York Times, resigned on June 7 following backlash from staffers at the paper over an op-ed by Senator Tom Cotton (R., Ark.), in which Cotton called to use federal troops to quell rioting in major cities.
Publisher A.G. Sulzberger blamed a “significant breakdown in our editing processes,” though no actual factual errors were identified, and Bennet subsequently apologized to Times staff. Numerous staffers had tweeted that Cotton’s op-ed put black colleagues “in danger.”
NYT reporters in a rare open revolt over the opinion side running Tom Cotton’s op-Ed calling to deploy the military to “restore order.” pic.twitter.com/MgLuR8EunJ
— Alex Thompson (@AlxThomp) June 3, 2020
7. The Los Angeles Galaxy, a Major League Soccer team, fired midfielder Aleksandar Katai after his wife referred to Black Lives Matter protestors as “disgusting cattle” and issued a demand to “kill” them via her social media. Katai apologized shortly thereafter on Instagram:
6. Philadelphia Inquirer editor Stan Wischnowski announced his resignation on June 6 after about 40 staff members called in sick to protest a headline that was viewed as tasteless. Wischnowski resigned after over 20 years at the paper.
“Buildings Matter, Too” read the headline of a story by architecture columnist Inga Saffron, who wrote about the destruction caused by looting and rioting in Philadelphia during George Floyd demonstrations.
5. Students at the University of California Los Angeles have signed a petition to fire business professor Gordon Klein. The professor refused to alter the final exam for his Management 127 after a student had emailed Klein to ask for accommodations for minority students in “these trying times.”
“Thanks for your suggestion in your email below that I give black students special treatment, given the tragedy in Minnesota,” Klein wrote in his response email, which was obtained by the Washington Free Beacon. “Do you know the names of the classmates that are black? How can I identify them since we’ve been having online classes only? Are there any students that may be of mixed parentage, such as half black-half Asian? What do you suggest I do with respect to them? A full concession or just half?”
UCLA senior Preet Bains started a Change.org petition calling on the university to fire Klein, writing that the professor’s response was “extremely insensitive, dismissive, and woefully racist.”
Klein is reportedly under investigation by the university for discrimination, and LA police have stepped up their presence near Klein’s house after the professor received threats, according to Fox News.
4. Stockwell Day, a commentator on Canada’s CBC News and former cabinet minister in the government of Stephen Harper, apologized in early June for “insensitive” comments that denied the existence of “systemic racism” in Canada.
“Yes, there’s a few idiot racists hanging around but Canada is not a racist country and most Canadians are not racist. And our system, that always needs to be improved, is not systemically racist,” Day said during a panel discussion.
Day then backtracked, writing on Twitter, “I realize my comments in debate on Power and Politics were insensitive and hurtful. I ask forgiveness for wrongly equating my experiences to theirs.I commit to them my unending efforts to fight racism in all its forms.”
Day eventually resigned from positions with telecommunications firm Telus and business law firm MacMillan LLP.
3. Grant Napear was fired from his job as a radio host on the KHTK station, and resigned from his job as play-by-play announcer for Sacramento Kings, after receiving backlash for tweeting “All Lives Matter…Every Single One!” on May 31. Napear had worked with the Kings since 1988.
Napear’s “recent comments about the Black Lives Matter movement do not reflect the views or values of [KHTK owner] Bonneville International Corporation,” the company said in a statement. “The timing of Grant’s tweet was particularly insensitive.”
“[I was] not as educated on BLM as I thought,” Napear said in a statement on June 1. “I had no idea that when I said ‘All Lives Matter’ that it was counter to what BLM is trying to get across.”
2. David Shor, a 28-year-old political data analyst who worked for Barack Obama’s reelection campaign, was fired after tweeting out a study showing that violent protests, and the ensuing media coverage, tends to increase support for Republican politicians.
Post-MLK-assasination race riots reduced Democratic vote share in surrounding counties by 2%, which was enough to tip the 1968 election to Nixon. Non-violent protests *increase* Dem vote, mainly by encouraging warm elite discourse and media coverage. https://t.co/S8VZSuaz3G. pic.twitter.com/VRUwnRFuVW
— (((David Shor))) (@davidshor) May 28, 2020
Ari Trujillo Webster, the founder of OpenField, a Democratic canvassing app, promptly attacked Shor in racial terms for sharing the paper.
Yo. Minimizing black grief and rage to "bad campaign tactic for the Democrats" is bullshit most days, but this week is absolutely cruel.
This take is tone deaf, removes responsibility for depressed turnout from the 68 Party and reeks of anti-blackness.
— Ari "Vote by Mail" Trujillo Wesler 🌹🌈 (@TheReFTW) May 28, 2020
Following a cordial reply from Shor, Webster tagged his boss Dan Wager, the CEO of Civis Analytics, and wrote “come get your boy.”
Civis Analytics conducted an internal investigation of the incident and Shor was fired days later.
1. Lee Fang, an investigative reporter at The Intercept, was attacked on social media by his colleagues for sharing a Martin Luther King Jr. quote about the importance of remaining non-violent in the face of racism in response to activists’ claims that MLK believed violence was sometimes justified.
Seeing so many manipulate the MLK quote that riots are the "language of the unheard." Read the actual speech. It's a passionate argument against riots and in support of nonviolence at a time when much of the radical left despised MLK and embraced violence. https://t.co/Dbx1p9dTHU
— Lee Fang (@lhfang) May 31, 2020
The backlash mounted after Fang tweeted out a video in which a black man attending a George Floyd protest complained about back-on-black violence.
Asked everyone I spoke with today if there was anything they wanted to get off their chest about the movement. Max from Oakland, a supporter of BLM, had a measured critique he wanted to share. pic.twitter.com/07qMQyCdJ9
— Lee Fang (@lhfang) June 4, 2020
Tired of being made to deal with my coworker @lhfang continuing to push narratives about black on black crime after repeatedly being asked not to. This isn’t about me and him it’s about institutional racism and using free speech to couch anti-blackness. I am so fucking tired
— Akela Lacy (@akela_lacy) June 4, 2020
Fang, who reportedly feared he would be fired, posted a lengthy apology on Twitter two days after the exchange.