Rapid City mayor: Presidential statues will not be removed

 Courtesy KOTA-TV
Courtesy KOTA-TV (KSFY)
Published: Jun. 25, 2020 at 8:33 AM CDT
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The mayor of Rapid City says the city's presidential statues are not going anywhere.

Mayor Steve Allender addressed the topic during a city briefing on Wednesday, saying he has seen how much both locals and tourists love to stop by each of the 44 statues.

The question comes as statues across the country

amid a push against racial injustice. Many statues targeted are former Confederate leaders, but others have included former presidents who owned slaves, including Thomas Jefferson.

KOTA-TV reports Allender said none of Rapid City's statues will be removed. He says he has received phone calls asking for statues of recent Democratic presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton to be removed, but says those will are not going anywhere either.

"We are the city of presidents. We have statues of 44 presidents, of the United States, everyone of them did great things for our country, but everyone one of them was a sinner," Allender said. "Everyone of them has made mistakes, has made a fool out of himself, maybe even embarrassed this country, because they are human beings who have risen to the status of president of this great country. We're not removing any of them."

Allender added that the statues are each valued at well over one hundred thousand dollars and removing or damaging them could result in jail time.