Governor Cuomo has ordered the removal of busts of both Confederate Generals Lee and Jackson from the CUNY Hall of Fame. This is the governor of a state named after a vicious racist and slave trader. The city council president, who celebrated a domestic terrorist this past summer, applauds the action.
But Democrats are allowed to be hypocrites.
Governor Cuomo tweeted about his order to remove the busts. “Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson will be removed from the CUNY hall of great Americans because New York stands against racism,” Cuomo tweeted. “There are many great Americans, many of them New Yorkers worthy of a spot in this great hall. These two confederates are not among them.” . . .
This is the sanctimonious man who decided that a NYC bridge would be named after his mob-tied father. This is the man who is governor of a state and city named after a notorious slave trader.
“Clearly Confederate Army Generals are not great Americans and have no business being part of this display,” City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito told Gothamist in an email. You can agree with her point of view but just know that she is the woman who regaled and honored a Puerto Rican terrorist at the recent Puerto Rican Day parade. She herself is a hard-left agitator.
The point is we are all imperfect.
The busts were put there by Democrats in the United Daughters of the Confederacy in the first half of the 19th century. That group has since been labeled a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, which is itself a hate group.
At the turn of the last century, NYU established a Great Americans Hall of Fame at the urging of Dr. Henry Mitchell McCracken, an esteemed and accomplished educator, who served as Chancellor from 1891 to 1910.
The Hall of Fame was popular in its day but, as visits dried up in later years, it was turned over to CUNY.
The Democrat Daughters of the Confederacy nominated Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson for the hall. Stonewall’s bust was unveiled in 1957 and Lee’s in 1923.
In general, the beautiful marble and bronze statues were brought in to commemorate accomplishment and opportunity. It was meant as a counter to the corruption of the Gilded Age and a return to idealism.
Nominations were simple and these two busts were put in to unite a nation that still remembered the Civil War.
MacCracken allowed the flexible process of nominations because he wanted the hall to “be completely democratic.” If a citizen was dead 25 years, anyone could nominate a notable American, with winners selected every five years.
The nominations of Lee and Jackson were part of the Reconciliation Lincoln dreamed of. They were placed in the soldiers’ section.
There is a valid criticism of only two black Americans being placed in the hall but why haven’t blacks nominated other heroes? There are many remarkable black heroes.
Many suggest that notable black Americans should be put in place of Lee and Stonewall. Let’s hope they don’t put race baiters or communists in their stead.
After fighting a horrific war that killed over 640,000, perhaps as many as 850,000, we have gone from Reconciliation to fighting it again, forcing the South to lose once more. The “democratic” vision of MacCracken is dead.