Newark unveils 700 lb bronze statue of George Floyd, and raises some high-profile eyebrows

Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.

Journalist Jason Whitlock ripped the new 700-pound bronze statue of George Floyd that was unveiled in Newark, New Jersey this week, prompting praise from Donald Trump Jr.

The statue was unveiled at a town hall ceremony and, in typical fashion for liberal Democrats, Mayor Ras Baraka joined filmmaker Leon Pickney, the statue’s commissioner, and sculptor Stanley Watts for the unveiling. 

The statue sits on a park bench and is expected to remain in Newark for at least one year. 

Whitlock, a Blaze TV host, had some choice words for the project:

Whitlock makes a valid point amid his sarcasm– holidays and statues are not actionable change, among communities in need of real, not symbolic change. If every town in America has a George Floyd statue, there would still be problems rooted in the disintegration of the nuclear family among other social issues. Ironically, George Floyd’s death, as horrific as it was, was also a seismic spark for the growing defund the police movement — a movement that has reportedly led to an increase in crime and arguably hits hardest among those who live in depleted areas largely devoid of ‘nuclear families.’

President Trump’s son Don Jr. tweeted in support of Whitlock’s point:

Democrats continue to do what they’ve always done, make grand gestures that don’t equate to real change.

George Floyd represents a lot more than himself at this juncture in history. Hopefully when people walk by it and they see it…hopefully it inspires them to become active in the struggles that are happening right here in Newark and right here in New Jersey,” Baraka exclaimed at the unveiling.

(Video: PIX11)

Pickney commissioned the statue because he wanted a way to honor Floyd’s “humanity” and hoped that it would remind people of why so many calls for change have been incited. “The statue was to cause them to remember why they marched during such a horrific pandemic and I didn’t want them to go back to a status quo,” he continued.

The filmmaker donated the statue to the City of Newark. 

Watts, the artist, explained that he depicted Floyd in that way because the world “needed” the image of “a peaceful George”. 

“The world needed him relaxed and chilling on a bench and that’s what we produced and we produced him larger than life because, after death, George will be remembered,” Watts added. “That’s what memorials are. To remember and never forget why we changed today and tomorrow and for the rest of our existence on this planet.”

The mayor hopes that the statue will remain permanently in Newark.

Floyd was killed in May of 2020 after former police officer Derek Chauvin forcefully put his knee on the back of Floyd’s neck for nearly 10 minutes during his arrest. This incited calls to defund the police and resurgence of the “Black Lives Matter” movement.

The unveiling ceremony also served to honor Juneteenth (June 19th), the day slavery was formally ended in the United States. New Jersey will observe Juneteenth on Friday as a state-wide holiday for the first time ever. 

After a year of hyper-censored political correctness, perceived retaliation against those who refuse to get the vaccine, tearing down statues, removing religious holidays from children’s school calendars, lighting cities on fire, employing vigilante “justice”– and the list goes on–Americans have had it with being lectured by the liberal elite.

Many took to Twitter to voice their frustration:

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