13 June 2020

Taylor Swift calls for removal of ‘racist’ Tennessee statues saying they ‘make her sick'

Taylor Swift has demanded that officials in Tennessee permanently remove statues of ’racist figures’ from the state.

The 30 year-old pop star said monuments ’that celebrate racist historical figures who did evil things’ should be taken down and slammed those trying to protect them.

“As a Tennessean, it makes me sick that there are monuments standing in our state that celebrate racist historical figures who did evil things,” wrote the Shake It Off  singer.

“Edward Carmack and Nathan Bedford Forrest were DESPICABLE figures in our state history and should be treated as such.”

The statue of Carmack, which stood outside the Tennessee Capitol in Nashville, was torn down by protesters on May 30 but authorities have said it will be replaced saying the only way a memorial statue can be removed is by obtaining approval from the Tennessee Historical Commission.

“The state of Tennessee has vowed to replace it,” wrote an enraged Swift.

"FYI, he [Carmack] was a white supremacist newspaper editor who published pro-lynching editorials and incited the arson of the office of Ida B. Wells (who actually deserves a hero’s statue for her pioneering work in journalism and civil rights). 

“Replacing his statue is a waste of state funds and a waste of an opportunity to do the right thing,” she added.

She then turned her attention to ’KKK Grand Wizard’ Forrest of whom there are a number of statues around the state, one of which is still in situ inside the Capitol building.

“Then we get to this monstrosity,” she wrote.

“Nathan Bedford Forrest was a brutal slave trader and the first grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan who, during the Civil War, massacred dozens of black Union soldiers in Memphis.

“His statue is still standing and July 13th is ’Nathan Bedford Forrest Day’.

The outspoken star continued: "Taking down statues isn’t going to fix centuries of systemic oppression, violence and hatred that black people have had to endure but it might bring us one small step closer to making ALL Tennesseans and visitors to our state feel safe – not just the white ones. 

"We need to retroactively change the status of people who perpetuated hideous patterns of racism from ‘heroes’ to ‘villains’. 

“And villains don’t deserve statues.”

This is not the singer’s first public stand in the wake of the killing of George Floyd and the ever-growing Black Lives Matters movement.

On May 29 she shared her disgust at President Trump’s controversial ’when the looting starts the shooting starts’ tweet and pledged her commitment to voting him out of office.

She wrote: "After stoking the fires of white supremacy and racism your entire presidency, you have the nerve to feign moral superiority before threatening violence? "When the looting starts the shooting starts"??? We will vote you out in November @realdonaldtrump."

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