On the same morning President Trump unequivocally threw his support behind preserving monuments to treason and slavery, Maine Governor Paul LePage (R) equated removing Confederate monuments with destroying the 9/11 Memorial in New York City.
During an interview with a Maine radio station, LePage asserted those who want to remove Confederate monuments “don’t even know the history of this country.”
“Listen, whether we like it or not, this is what our history is,” he added, ignoring that the Confederacy was a different country altogether. “It’s just like going to New York City and taking down the monument to those who perished in 9/11 — it will come to that.”
You can listen to the audio here:
In which the governor of Maine says taking down Confederate monuments is like dismantling one to the victims of 9/11 https://t.co/xleqgrCgDo
— Siobhan Morris (@siomo) August 17, 2017
The 9/11 Memorial is a tribute to the victims of the terror attacks that took place that day in 2001, whereas Confederate statutes honor traitors who fought for slavery. So LePage’s analogy would make more sense if the 9/11 Memorial featured a statue of Osama bin Laden.
During other parts of Thursday’s interview, LePage echoed Trump’s “both sides” criticism of not just the white supremacists who gathered in Virginia over the weekend, but also those who gathered to counterprotest.
“I condemn both sides. I think they’re disgusting — both sides,” LePage said. “They went there with the intent of inciting violence, and the thing that nobody wants to talk about is two law enforcement officers were trying to do their jobs and they didn’t get home that night to their families, as [well as] this young lady who was killed. That was disgusting — there’s not place for either of those groups in this country.”
LePage was referring to the deaths of two Virginia state police officers who died on Saturday when their helicopter, which was circling above the white supremacist rally and counterprotests in Charlottesville, crashed. There’s no evidence any foul play was involved.
On the other hand, the “young lady” LePage referred to was 32-year-old Heather Heyer. Heyer, who was in Charlottesville to demonstrate against white supremacy, was murdered by an alleged Nazi sympathizer who ran over a group of counterprotesters with his car.