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Chicago pastor wants Washington, Jackson statues out of black communities



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CHICAGO – A Chicago pastor is calling for statutes of George Washington and Andrew Jackson to be removed from city parks named after them – because both American presidents owned slaves. 

Bishop James Dukes, pastor of Liberation Christian Center, wrote a letter to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the Chicago Park District, demanding the statues be taken down and the parks renamed. 

“I am feeling ambivalent that I would have to walk my child, attend a parade or enjoy a game of softball in a park that commemorates the memory of a slave owner,” he wrote. “Therefore, I call on the immediate removal of President George Washington and President Andrew Jackson names from the parks located on the southeast side of Chicago. They should not have the distinct honor of being held as heroes when they actively participated in the slave trade.”

“When I see that, I see a person who fought for the liberties, and I see people that fought for the justice and freedom of white America, because at that moment, we were still chattel slavery, and was three-fifths of humans,” the pastor said.

“Some people out here ask me, say ‘Well, you know, he taught his slaves to read.’ That’s almost sad; the equivalent of someone who kidnaps you, that you gave them something to eat.”

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  1. Why can’t these “history revisionists” just GROW UP?
    I am certain the ethnic makeup of Washington and Jackson Parks was a bit different when these monuments were erected. In another hundred years, these neighborhoods probably will have changed again.
    Destroying history will not change it, either for better, or for worse.

  2. He left out Jefferson Park and Grant Park.
    Yes, Ulysses S. Grant once owned a slave while living in Missouri. He manumitted him and granted him his freedom.
    As part of his last will and testament, George Washington freed all of his slaves.