Sunday, February 19, 2017

Pepperdine University Banishes Columbus

                Pepperdine University will soon evict a statue of recently reviled explorer Christopher Columbus from its California campus due to student demands at the Christian school. The sculpture, currently in a prominent spot above the college’s amphitheater, will be relocated to Pepperdine’s Florence, Italy campus. Back from whence you came, Chris! Explore this, you honkey pilgrim!
                The statue was donated to the university in 1992, 500 years after the Italian pathfinder discovered America, and roughly 15 years before we discovered we hate him for it. The university’s president has previously characterized the group that funded the figure as “Italian-American friends” of the institution. Probably code words for mafia.  Protesters claimed that the likeness of Columbus constituted “a prioritization of nominally esteemed university donors above the cultural acceptance and personal experience of marginalized students.” Translation: “screw the dirty wops!”
                The protest group “Waves Against Columbus” (?!) issued a statement claiming that the statue is “a celebration of genocide and racial oppression.” Perhaps they’re confusing it with Planned Parenthood.
                Upon hearing the news of the formerly great man’s expulsion, one student tweeted: “Pepperdine is getting rid of our Christopher Columbus statue! Progress!” To which another student replied: “I am so excited about this!”
                The school’s tolerant young scholars are apparently very good at banishing offensive works of art from campus grounds. Last summer the Pepperdine president, Andrew Benton, bowed to pressure and saw to the removal of a wooden mural that hung in the campus cafĂ©. The objectionable portrayal depicted “Father [Junipero] Serra next to a mission, wildlife, conquistadors and a Spanish colonel prominent in the center of the piece alongside a group of Native Americans in the lower right corner.” Benton told students via email that “stories of conquest and the art associated therewith are painful reminders of loss and human tragedy” for many, including those at the university.
                This is an obvious example of “hate art.” What was its creator thinking? A Christian and a military leader in the same piece? Intolerable. Maybe they should send it back to Italy on the same boat the statue of Columbus is on. Is the Santa Maria still in service?
                Columbus was an adventurer, trailblazer and immigrant…who discovered and begat the New World. But that’s not progressive enough for the pinheads at Pepperdine.


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