President Trump, on July 3, boldly thumbed his nose at the hysterical leftists and issued the Executive Order on Building and Rebuilding Monuments to American Heroes. It came on the same day the president not only rocked Mount Rushmore and South Dakota with a patriotic-themed event on the eve of Independence Day but also managed to irritate his detractors and rally the faithful into once again believing in America. Under the watchful gaze of former Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln, the current president described his vision for what he called a National Garden of American Heroes.
Trump promised that Mount Rushmore would never be “defaced” or “desecrated” and then thumped the radicals tearing down American history by removing or vandalizing statues. Perhaps the time has come for this latest EO – aimed, perhaps, at making far-left fascists, as Trump refers to them, shriek at the moon.
The order reads in part:
“To destroy a monument is to desecrate our common inheritance. These statues are not ours alone, to be discarded at the whim of those inflamed by fashionable political passions; they belong to generations that have come before us and to generations yet unborn. It is our responsibility as Americans to stand strong against this violence, and to peacefully transmit our great national story to future generations through newly commissioned monuments to American heroes.”
The order also states the newly commissionable artwork must be “lifelike or realistic” and that no artists that dabbled in “abstract or modernist” styles should apply. What do abstract tears look like when flowing? Will they be recognizable?
South Dakota — A Good Place to Plant the Garden
American sculptor and creator of Mount Rushmore, Gutzon Borglum, selected the four men on the mount for different and vital periods in the nation’s history. Washington represents the birth of a free country. Jefferson is an icon of the rapid growth of the colonies. Lincoln was chosen as the American to preserve the new nation, which, without his wisdom, could have perished after the Civil War. By the turn of the century, Roosevelt, the Bull Moose, was a crucial figure in the social and environmental development of the United States.
These men represent the America that we know. And Trump’s National Garden EO lists key figures that many Americans may or may not have heard of, that shaped the nation – in fact, the world. Clara Barton, the Civil War nurse who founded the American Red Cross. The great abolitionist Frederick Douglass, aviator Amelia Earhart, and Christa McAuliffe – an educator who died as a crew member of the Challenger Space Shuttle.
Perhaps these Americans also on the list are familiar: Martin Luther King, Jr., former President Ronald Reagan, baseball legend Jackie Robinson – the first African American to play in Major League Baseball. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, author Harriet Beecher Stowe who penned Uncle Tom’s Cabin, and Harriet Tubman, who strategically used the Underground Railroad to rescue upwards of 70 slaves seeking freedom.
What better place for a garden of American greats than under the gaze of those four men carved into Mount Rushmore?
As Trump’s order explains for those who haven’t grasped what the erasing of history will mean for a future nation, the statues will depict reality: “None will have lived perfect lives, but all will be worth honoring, remembering, and studying.”
Graham J Noble, the wise and sensible sage of Liberty Nation, also offered his take on the undereducated:
“The current anti-American rage sweeping the country is supposed to be all about holding people – and even entire races – accountable for past sins. Should not every past and present elected official and community leader – regardless of political affiliation – be pilloried, then, for having allowed the nation’s alleged problems to fester and go unhealed for so long?”
Perhaps the president feels as Noble does and wants to find a location to fill with critical American histories: for safekeeping from – and out of reach of – the crazies in one reflective and yet celebratory place that citizens can explore. If all Americans, past or present, are without sin and evil habits, well, there won’t be a monument left for future generations to study, to learn to do better, or to stand and be tough when the country needs a hero.
Read more from Sarah Cowgill.