After a Minnesota city council voted to cut the pledge of allegiance, patriotic protestors showed up in force to display national pride and American imagery in defiance of the ban. St. Louis Park, a suburb of Minneapolis, held its latest council meeting on Wednesday.
Municipal councilors for the city of 50,000 had earlier voted to end a time-honored tradition for governmental functions when they decided to cut the pledge.
The ban, which was passed unanimously, was put in place for the city government to better represent the city’s diverse community. Councilor Tim Brausen claimed they had “concluded that in order to create a more welcoming environment to a diverse community we’re going to forgo saying the Pledge of Allegiance before every meeting.”
A council member named Anne Mavity sponsored the rules change that omit the Pledge of Allegiance from council meetings. Under the new rules, the Pledge would be rendered little more than a ceremonial oddity, being taken out of the closet for rare instances such as Boy Scout troop events.
The move was met with a sharp backlash from patriotic Americans of St. Louis Park. The latest council meeting was mobbed by citizens outfitted in patriotic clothing, some of them carrying American flags and “Trump 2020” campaign materials.
Demonstrators who spoke before the council made it clear that most members of the city’s diverse population embraced the Pledge of Allegiance as patriotic Americans.
The Mayor of the city is said to be reconsidering the unusual ban in face of the backlash from residents. Mayor Jake Spano stated the decision to remove the pledge of allegiance is being reconsidered by the council.
City of Denver Unanimously Votes to Rename Columbus Park “La Raza Park”
There might come a time when nothing in the US is named after Christopher Columbus.
The Denver City Council unanimously voted to rename Columbus Park last week Monday, and now it will be named “La Raza Park.”
“La raza” is Spanish for “the race,” which has connotations with Latino identity politics. A Denver Post article tells us that the phrase “viva la raza” (long live the race) was the “rallying cry of the Chicano movement in the 1960s and ’70s.” The Chicano Movement encouraged Mexican ethnic and cultural solidarity with a particular emphasis on their indigenous heritage. The movement, however, rejected assimilation and thus the term “Mexican-American,” essentially branding themselves as the Hispanic version of the Black Power movement.
Councilwoman Amanda Sandoval claims that the unanimous vote was an act of officially naming a park that has “always” been unofficially called by its new name. “La raza is a word of unity and about celebrating community,” she said without a hint of irony.
The reason for officially renaming the park is about what you’d expect, namely because Christopher Columbus is irredeemably associated with colonialism and genocide and is thus not fit to be honored in any way, shape, or form.
Arturo Gonzalez, a retired professor, said that “Mexican Chicanos and Indigenous peoples have suffered genocide over the last 500 years. We live with that trauma. We continue to live with that trauma.”
Renaming parks, buildings, and schools that were previously named after so-called “problematic” or “white supremacist” historical figures is nothing new, of course, but the practice has accelerated over the past several months due to the hysteria following the George Floyd riots.
Big League Politics has covered many instances of this phenomenon. One of the most recent instances included a San Francisco school district renaming Abraham Lincoln High School because black lives apparently “didn’t matter” to him:
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