White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany slammed a recommendation from a Washington, D.C., city committee to rename nearly 50 schools, government buildings, and other public areas for their ties to racism or oppression.
“As long as President Trump is in the White House, the mayor’s irresponsible recommendations will go absolutely nowhere, and as the mayor of our Nation’s capital city — a city that belongs to the American people — she ought to be ashamed for even suggesting them for consideration,” McEnany said in a statement released Tuesday.
Mayor Muriel Bowser tasked the District of Columbia Facilities and Commemorative Expressions working group in July, amid nationwide protests, with evaluating the names behind monuments, schools, public parks, and other sites, according to local outlet WUSA 9.
The task force reported back to Bowser on Tuesday, recommending that 49 spaces be renamed based on five “disqualifying histories” that include: “participation in slavery,” “involvement in systemic racism,” “support for oppression,” “involvement in supremacist agenda,” and “violation of District human rights laws.”
An initial report from the task force advised that sites such as the Washington Monument and Jefferson Memorial be renamed, but, as they are on federal land, that proposal was seen as a nonstarter and has since been revised.
“By publishing a plan that recommends potentially removing the Washington Monument, Christopher Columbus Statue, Andrew Jackson Statue, and Jefferson Memorial — among many other ludicrous recommendations — the radically liberal mayor of Washington, D.C., is repeating the same left-wing narrative used to incite dangerous riots: demolishing our history and destroying our great heritage,” McEnany said in response to the plan.
The group reported that the majority of public spaces in D.C. are named after white men and has advised that they be renamed to include more women, people of color, and gay and lesbian advocates.
“In some instances, more research is necessary before a determination can be made,” the group’s report said. “In all instances we believe strongly that all District of Columbia owned public spaces, facilities and commemorative works should only honor those individuals who exemplified those values such as equity, opportunity and diversity that DC residents hold dear.”
McEnany said that D.C. is “rightly filled” with sites to honor those Americans who helped build the country.
“President Donald J. Trump believes these places should be preserved, not torn down; respected, not hated; and passed on for generations to come,” she added.
Author: Emma Colton