WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Protesters for and against the removal of the Emancipation Memorial debate in Lincoln Park on June 26, 2020 in Washington, DC. The Army has activated 400 unarmed Washington D.C. National Guard troops in an effort to protect monuments amid the ongoing protests over Black deaths at the hands of police.

Source:   Ryan Saavedra

Black Americans showed up to defend the Lincoln Emancipation Memorial in Washington, D.C., on Friday to push back on extremists who want to tear the statue down.

The statue of former President Abraham Lincoln was purchased by slaves as a way to honor Lincoln, a Republican, for freeing the slaves. The statue shows Lincoln standing over a slave who is rising to his knees while holding a broken chain after being freed from slavery.

“So, I have made my mission to protect that statue,” one woman said. “Why not put a sign there that says why it’s there. Our Jewish brothers and sisters around the world have monuments to the Holocaust. In Germany, they even having existing concentration camps for [people] to come in and see. This means that they cannot deny what happened because there are Holocaust deniers.”

“If you remove all evidence of slavery, it’s like it never happened. That’s exactly what’s happening,” the woman continued. “Let it stand, put up another statue with signage, have a timeline [inaudible].”