The board of the American Museum of Natural History in New York City announced that they will be removing the 14-foot statue of former President Theodore Roosevelt that has been located outside the museum entrance for the past 80 years. Hollywood actor and director Ben Stiller responded to this news by calling for the museum to erect a statue of the late Robin Williams in its place. “How about replacing it with a statue of Robin Williams. He deserves one,” Stiller tweeted.
Williams, who tragically committed suicide back in 2014, portrayed Roosevelt in the 2006 adventure comedy “Night at the Museum.” In the movie, Roosevelt comes to life along with the other exhibits in the museum, with the former president coming alive on top of his horse.
Theodore Roosevelt's statue will be removed from the Museum of Natural History in New York City. The memorial has long prompted objections as a symbol of colonialism.https://t.co/aPafBjXCOv
— The New York Times (@nytimes) June 21, 2020
This comes after museum officials announced that the statue would be removed due to increasing racial tensions in the United States, which have been on the rise since the death of George Floyd last month. “Over the last few weeks, our museum community has been profoundly moved by the ever-widening movement for racial justice that has emerged after the killing of George Floyd,” the museum’s president, Ellen V. Futter, told The New York Times. “We have watched as the attention of the world and the country has increasingly turned to statues as powerful and hurtful symbols of systemic racism.” Futter added, “Simply put, the time has come to move it.”
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio commented as well, saying that the time had come to remove the “problematic statue.” Mayor de Blasio expounded: “The American Museum of Natural History has asked to remove the Theodore Roosevelt statue because it explicitly depicts Black and Indigenous people as subjugated and racially inferior,” de Blasio said. “The City supports the Museum’s request. It is the right decision and the right time to remove this problematic statue.”