A few days after protesters in Bristol, England, tore down a statue of slave trader Edward Colston and tossed it into the Bristol Harbor, some protesters across the pond in Richmond, Virginia, similarly took matters into their own hands, ripping down a statue of Christopher Columbus and pushing it into a lake.
According to NBC12, the incident happened at around 9 p.m. at Byrd Park in Richmond after a peaceful demonstration honoring indigenous people.
Protesters reportedly tore the statue from its foundation, spray-painted it and then set it on fire, before it was dumped in the park’s lake.
According to 13 News, the foundation on which the statue once sat was left to display a sign reading “Columbus represents genocide.”
Hundreds of miles north of Richmond, in Boston, another Christopher Columbus statue was also damaged, having its head removed on the same night.
Police are investigating the incident, news reports indicate.
Statues representing colonization, the oppression of indigenous people, slavery and racism have come under sharp scrutiny once again in light of the police-involved killing of George Floyd. Protesters across the globe, who have long sought the removal of the problematic pillars in their communities, have seemingly stopped asking in some cases and started to take matters into their own hands either removing the offending statues themselves or vandalizing them.