South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg on Friday addressed the planned protests at Mount Rushmore during President Donald Trump’s Independence Day event.
Activists believe the presidential monument is a desecration of land stolen from the Native Americans, but Ravnsborg said the monument is solely meant to “honor America” and his state of South Dakota. He also disagreed with the notion that Mount Rushmore is a symbol of white supremacy.
“Each of the presidents were picked for a specific reason,” Ravnsborg said on FNC’s “Fox & Friends.” “President Washington, for obviously the birth of our nation, President Jefferson for the growth of our nation, President Lincoln for the development of our nation and Teddy Roosevelt for the preservation of our nation. This is a symbol of American exceptionalism, and I believe that there’s no way of white supremacy.”
Host Brian Kilmeade asked, “You feel some people are looking at these presidents and saying, ‘Well, America stole this land from the Indians and then put their presence in the mountain. How dare they?'”
“That obviously has been a dispute over the years since the time about 1876,” replied Ravnsborg. “But that case has actually been litigated to the United States Supreme Court. We are sympathetic to their feelings on the issue, but I do believe that it was not meant to desecrate the land but to honor America and honor our state of South Dakota.”
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