Harvard student YouTuber promises to tear down Emancipation Memorial that 'embodies white supremacy'
- Protesters, including leftist college student activists, have called for the removal of a statue of Abraham Lincoln in Washington, D.C.
- One of the leading organizers is a student at Harvard, who accomplished brief YouTube fame.
Protesters in Washington D.C recently announced plans to remove a statue of Abraham Lincoln, which was erected to celebrate the abolition of slavery. Among those leading the rally was Glenn Foster, a smalltime YouTube celebrity and Harvard school of government student, who promised to remove the statue during a Tuesday demonstration.
In Washington D.C.’s Lincoln Park, a few blocks away from the United States Supreme Court and the U.S. Capitol, a group of activists, including Foster, assembled to call for the Emancipation Memorial’s removal. The rally, organized by Foster and Marcus Goodwin, a candidate for Washington D.C’s City Council, highlighted grievances of the black community pertaining to police brutality and systematic inequities.
However, it most closely addressed a statue which towers over the park, and which in even the recent past had been noncontroversial.
“This statue right here embodies the white supremacy and the disempowerment of black people that is forced upon us by white people,” Foster told the crowd. “That is why we are tearing this statue down.”
The statue was built largely with funding from men and women who were freed from slavery by President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. It is notable as the only memorial to the Great Emancipator constructed mostly with funds solicited from black Americans freed from slavery. The keynote speaker at its dedication, abolitionist and thinker Frederick Douglas said that under Lincoln’s “wise and beneficent rule [black Americans] saw ourselves gradually lifted from the depths of slavery to the heights of liberty and manhood.”
Foster seemingly could not disagree more, telling local news that the statue “embodies the fact that black people are [seen as] inferior to white people.”
Glenn Foster speaks to a crowd of a few hundred in Lincoln Park and says this Emancipation Memorial must come down. Says not tearing it down tonight but they’ll be back tomorrow and the day after. pic.twitter.com/IdAY0WbiEl— Daniella Cheslow (@Dacheslow) June 23, 2020
This isn’t the first time Foster has achieved national notoriety.
Months ago, a video in which he explained how he got into Harvard University went viral on YouTube. In the video, viewed more than 50,000 times, Foster detailed his qualifications, strategies, and test scores which aided his acceptance to the prominent Ivy League.
Foster set the video to private as this article was being written. These accomplishments included work in TV journalism at CNN, as well as student government positions before college. But he also suggested early in the video that being black was a “dip in the bucket” that helped him gain admission. In the same video, Foster notes that he met prominent left-wing politicians like former President Barack Obama, socialist Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, and twice-failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
About 150 ppl here and activist Glenn Foster, 20, says he is not planning to take down the statue tonight but will be back Thursday with rope pic.twitter.com/gPOiArQRn0— Daniella Cheslow (@Dacheslow) June 23, 2020
Other videos Foster produced are critical of figures as different from each other as Kanye West and presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden. He referred to West with a racial epithet and called Biden “an unaddressed racist.”
A recent article in Harvard Magazine calls Foster a “longtime advocate for communities of color.”
Campus Reform reached out to Foster for comment but did not receive a response in time for publication.
Follow the authors of this article on Twitter: @Leo_Thuman