For millions of immigrants and their descendants, the Christopher Columbus statue is a deep-rooted public expression of pride, culture, and identity passed from generation to generation.
Expressive conduct is recognized under the First Amendment as a form of protected speech.
The recent attacks and the hateful defilement of Columbus and other statues are not mere acts of vandalism.
These are hate crimes.
They are hurtful to those who express their pride in their culture and in the accomplishments of their forebears.
It’s time for federal and state law authorities to investigate and prosecute hate crimes to the full extent of the law.
It’s time to drop the hate and seek the truth.