Black community protests decision to return Columbus statue to Seaside Park in Bridgeport
Members of the Black community in Bridgeport rallied against a recent vote to return a statue of Christopher Columbus to Seaside Park.
Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim ordered the statue to be temporarily removed following the unrest in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd.
The city parks board's current plan to return the statue to its pedestal at the end of September was met with sharp criticism.
"What Columbus did, there's no change with what white men in America did to us 400 years again, when they kidnapped our parents and brought us here," says Lyle Hassan Jones, of Bridgeport.
Jones says the connection between this issue and the recent police shooting of Jacob Blake in Wisconsin, is a continued disregard for people of color in America.
"Where you can shoot a black man in the back seven times in broad daylight in front of witnesses, with the children in his car," he says.
City Council members say they are planning a public hearing Sept. 3 to see how residents feel about returning the statue for good. However, the head of the parks board told the Connecticut Post that the final decision lies with the board and not City Council.