October 14, 2019 - Today marks the fourth Anti-Columbus Day tour organized by Decolonize This Place and a citywide coalition of grassroots groups. We will begin at the Roosevelt Monument, and move into the city at large, joining together the movements for Decolonization, Abolition, Anti-Gentrification, and Demilitarization.
Our three demands to the Museum remain outstanding: Rename the Day, Remove the Statue, and Respect the Ancestors. The museum has made superficial changes to some of its displays, and, following the recommendation of the NYC Monuments Commission in 2018, it has placed a plaque one ythe Roosevelt statue encouraging viewers to consider "both sides" of the racist monument that stands. This is inadequate, to say the least.
Today, we are escalating against this museum by highlighting the presence of figures like Richard Lefrak and Rebekah Mercer on the board, but also looking beyond the AMNH to the broader landscape of power and wealth in the city.
Today's action comes in the aftermath of the removal of Warren Kanders from the Whitney, bringing into alignment ongoing campaigns calling not only for institutional divestment from prisons, war, and climate destruction, but also for reinvestment in community-led initiatives for land, housing, and health. The action stands in solidarity with the Indigenous movements of this city, and it will amplify the work of coalitions including No New Jails NYC, MoMA Divest, and the People's Housing Plan, among others.
Participating groups include:
No New Jails NYC
Indigenous Kinship Collective
Harlem Solidarity and Defense Committee
Art Space Sanctuary
Take Back the Bronx
Semillas Collective and Friends
Chinatown Art Brigade
Queens Anti-Gentrification Project
Mi Casa No Es Su Casa: Illumination Against Gentrification
South Asia Solidarity Initiative
Stand With Kashmir
NYC Shut it Down
In Our Lifetime-United For Palestine
Direct Action Front for Palestine
Art News - Hundreds Ascend Metropolitan Museum of Art Stairs for Indigenous People's Day Protest
The Art Newspaper - Nearly 500 Protesters Stage Anti-Columbus Day History Tour at New York Museums