Removal of Mount Rushmore: Not on Noem’s watch

Gray Hughes
The afternoon of June 26, Gov. Kristi Noem took to Facebook and penned a post that she entitled: “Not on My Watch.”
The 545-word post was in response to some voicing their opinion on social media that Mount Rushmore National Monument should be removed.
“Now we’re seeing threats to Mount Rushmore,” Noem wrote. “To those who would threaten America’s Shrine of Democracy, I have one simple message for you: Not on my watch.”
The call from some on social media — especially Twitter and Facebook — to remove the famous stone faces of Mount Rushmore comes in a national wave where historical monuments have been removed or destroyed by protesters.
Many statues that have been destroyed or removed depict those who have connections to slavery or racism; however, some statues destroyed depict those who have connections to neither slavery nor racism.
The posts on social media to remove or destroy the faces on Mount Rushmore seen by this reporter typically deal with the fact that two of the faces on Mount Rushmore (George Washington and Thomas Jefferson) were slave owners and because the faces were created on Lakota land.
In her Facebook post, Noem said that Mount Rushmore is a national monument and because of this she will partner with the federal government and offering the resources of South Dakota to ensure proper security measures are in place.
“We will do everything in our power to make sure Mount Rushmore remains as majestic and inspiring as it is today,” Noem wrote. “President (Donald Trump) is visiting Mount Rushmore in just a few days (for the scheduled July 3 Independence Day celebration at the Memorial), and it is such an honor to have the President of the United States visit South Dakota, especially to celebrate America’s birthday. Security measures will be in full force for the event, but we know that threats to Mount Rushmore may continue after the President leaves. We’ll stay diligent about protecting it.”
Noem concludes her post by saying the men on Mount Rushmore weren’t perfect and that nobody is perfect.
They had flaws, she said, but they all had good virtues, as well, and did incredible things for the United States.
Today, Noem says, the United States is the “greatest nation in the history of the world.” That, she said, is in no small part thanks to the men honored on Mount Rushmore.
“We can learn from their successes, and we can also learn from their mistakes,” Noem wrote. “And in doing so, we must continue to fight for the American ideal that each of them spent their lives striving for: ‘All men are created equal.’ ”

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