Horrible: Rioters Tear Down Statue Of Immigrant, Anti-Slavery Activist, Union Soldier In Madison

OPINION | This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion.

The scene in Wisconsin’s capital is one of political unrest.

Rioters are marching the street of Madison, tearing down statues and assaulting members of the state’s legislature.

The violence peaked on Tuesday evening, pouring into the early hours of Wednesday morning, as Governor Tony Evers put the Wisconsin National Guard on notice to protect statues in and around the Capitol and other state buildings.

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports Governor Tony Evers released a statement on Wednesday calling for an end to the violence.

“I want to be clear: violence against any person — whether in the middle of the street in broad daylight, at home trying to sleep, going for a run, or happening upon a protest as was the case last night — is wrong,” he said. “It should never be tolerated.”

According to the report, a crowd of 200-300 people participated in the destructive demonstrations that resulted in the tearing down of two statues.

“A molotov cocktail also was thrown into the Madison and Dane County administration building where the county jail sits,” the Journal-Sentinel reports.

And, from the report:

In Madison, statues of Wisconsin’s motto “Forward” and of Col. Hans Christian Heg were dragged away from their spots guarding the statehouse.

Heg was an anti-slavery activist who fought and died for the Union during the U.S. Civil War. His nearly 100-year-old sculpture was decapitated and thrown into a Madison lake by protesters.

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The original Forward statue was first placed in front of the Wisconsin State Capitol in 1895. Protesters tore down a replica that was commissioned in the 1990s.

Forward is “an allegory of devotion and progress,” according to the Wisconsin Historical Society.