Fox 9, June 10, 2020
A group has made good on its promise to tear down the statue of Christopher Columbus standing on the Minnesota State Capitol grounds.
Speaking earlier in the day, Minnesota Department of Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington said troopers would try to speak with a group that wants to tear down a statue of Christopher Columbus on the state capitol grounds.
But, at 5 p.m., the group tossed a rope around the statue and tugged it to the ground. Members of the crowd then danced and spit on the statue.
Speaking Wednesday, Governor Walz said he understands the impact that the symbolism of the statue can have on people
Mike Forcia with the American Indian Movement, a Native American advocacy group that organized the rally at the state capitol on Wednesday, said it’s time for the statue to go.
Forcia says Governor Walz has shown some support for removing the statue but wanted to go through the proper process. Forcia says the group is tired of being stonewalled and is now taking matters into their own hands.
But, Forcia said Wednesday that “the time for being complacent is over.”
After it was torn down, troopers did move in around the pedestal before Forcia asked the crowd to move away so the state could remove the statue. With the help of a tow truck, the statue was removed from the area.
Forcia says, at that point, he was told by Minnesota State Patrol that he would be charged with criminal damage to property.
“I wear it as a badge of honor. I’m happy we did it. No regrets whatsoever,” Forcia said in response.
[Editor’s Note: Video of the tear-down is below.]
— 𝕋𝕙𝕚𝕖𝕣𝕣𝕪 𝕁. 𝔽. 𝕋𝕙𝕠𝕟𝕟𝕒𝕥𝕥𝕖 (@ThierryJFT) June 11, 2020