- The Washington Times - Monday, July 27, 2020

Pushing back against “cancel culture” will help President Trump and Republican lawmakers in competitive races as the November elections focus on America’s history as much as its future, said Rep. Ken Buck.

The Colorado Republican, who spent last year writing a book about U.S. history, says the subject is more timely than ever now that liberals are waging a “war” on the nation’s past.

“Progressives are trying to rewrite history,” Mr. Buck told The Washington Times. “It fits perfectly with what is going on right now around the country and this idea that this is some sort of grassroots revolution that is occurring is nonsense.”

For his upcoming book “Capitol of Freedom,” Mr. Buck toured the Capitol at night and spoke with historians about the reflections of history in the building’s installations and architecture.

Each chapter of the book, set for publication Aug. 4, details a piece of American history that is on display in the Capitol.

With liberal protesters in the name of Black Lives Matter vandalizing Confederate statues and other landmarks across the country, Mr. Trump and his conservatives allies have declared that erasing U.S. history is not the solution to today’s problems. The president also has used the unrest as a way to criticize Democratic mayors for allowing crime to rise in their cities.

Mr. Buck said the iconoclastic fervor is part of a left-wing revolution that, if fully understood by American voters, will be rejected at the polls.

“This is a George Soros, well-funded, Antifa, Black Lives Matter organization that can’t change America the way they want to because the Constitution is in their way, so they need to rewrite our Constitution and our history in order to get to where they want to go,” Mr. Buck said.

He noted voters are getting frustrated over “cancel culture” and want leaders to acknowledge that erasing history is dangerous to the foundation of the nation.

A protest on Saturday in Eaton, Colorado, turned dangerous when a driver charged a group of Northern Colorado Young Republicans who were gathered to defend the police amid the anger against them.

“My constituents were peacefully voicing their support for police when a SUV drove through the crowd, nearly hitting them,” Mr. Buck tweeted. “All Americans should be able to exercise their #1A rights, free of violence.”

The suspect was detained by police, according to local reports.

Following the May 25 death of George Floyd, a Black man, under the knee of a White police officer in Minneapolis, dozens of cities have seen racial-justice marches. Some of the events have turned into violent riots.

The movement spurred efforts to remove Confederate statues from the Capitol and monuments to a host of historic figures from public spaces across the country.

Protesters have defaced and destroyed not just memorials linked to the Confederacy but also statues of abolitionists who fought to end slavery, including Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass.

Several statues of Christopher Columbus also have been targeted.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, whose city has seen increased violence in recent weeks, had a statue of Columbus removed overnight from a city park.

“Last night, after consultation with a variety of stakeholders, the City temporarily removed the Christopher Columbus statues in Grant Park and Arrigo Park until further notice,” the mayor announced on Twitter.

She noted the city would be evaluating other memorials and murals.

“We took this step in response to demonstrations that became unsafe for both protesters and police, and to efforts by individuals to independently pull the Grant Park statue down in an extremely dangerous manner,” she said. “This step is an effort to protect public safety and to preserve a safe space for an inclusive and democratic public dialogue about our city’s symbols.”

Critics accused Ms. Lightfoot of caving to mob demand.

Polls on the issue have been mixed.

A majority, 58%, of voters in a recent Harvard CAPS/Harris poll released last month said the figures should stay. Days earlier, though, another poll by Quinnipiac University was released and showed a majority, 52%, wanted to see them taken down from public spaces.

Democrats for the most part have sided with removing the statues.

The House last week approved a bill that would remove Confederate statues from the Capitol. The vote was 305-113 with 72 Republicans joining Democrats in support of the bill.

If enacted into law, the legislation would remove nearly a dozen statues that are on display in National Statuary Hall.

Each state can donate two statues of figures for display in the building. If the bill were signed into law — which is unlikely given Mr. Trump’s position on “cancel culture” — the Confederate statues would be returned to their home state or placed on display at the Smithsonian.

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