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Dodgers' Infielder Jackie Robinson

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Last week, a statue of baseball legend and MLB integrator Jackie Robinson was cut off at the ankles and stolen from McAdams Park in Wichita, Kansas. All that was left on the statue’s platform was its feet. Video surveillance showed the culprits loading the statue into a pickup truck and driving off. On Tuesday morning, it was found dismantled and burned in a trashcan.

Somebody lynched Jackie Robinson’s statue, y’all.

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According to ABC News, the Wichita Fire Department responded to a report of a trash can fire at Garvey Park just after 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, and, after extinguishing the fire, firefighters found what appeared to be burned remnants of the Robinson statue, “which is not salvageable at this time,” said Wichita police spokesperson Andrew Ford.

“It’s really disheartening to see the remnants of the statue, the disgraceful way it’s been disrespected,” Wichita Police Chief Joe Sullivan said during the briefing. “This is a direct indication of the pressure our investigators are putting on the perpetrators that committed this act.”

Sullivan also encouraged the perpetrators of this senseless crime to turn themselves in, but he said, “Either way, we will be arresting several people for what they’ve done to our community.” Authorities haven’t reported any suspects in the case, but they did announce Monday that they believe they’ve found the truck used to haul the statue away from the park.

So, we’re all thinking it: Some salty white Klan Kadets in Kansas went full reconstruction era by deconstructing Robinson’s statue and burning it like it was a fresh cross on a Black family’s front lawn.

Of course, as long as the cops haven’t found any suspects, that’s only speculation. But it would be surprising if a non-white person in Wichita, which is 70% white, turned out to be responsible, and if the culprits are white, it would be a hard sell if they were to claim racism wasn’t the motive. I mean, what else could it be?

Unsurprisingly, Caucasian X (the bizarro world Black Twitter) is rife with folks calling it hypocritical to be outraged about Robinson’s statue being destroyed while celebrating the tearing down of Confederate monuments and the statue of Thomas Jefferson—because the description of a civil rights era icon and the removal of statues commemorating slave owners and advocates for the preservation of Black people in bondage and forced servitude are exactly the same thing in the totally-not-racist MAGA mind, amirite?

Anyway, Wichita Council member Brandon Johnson assured the public during a news briefing that every effort will be made to see that the statue—which was built by artist John Parsons and donated to the community by League 42, named for Robinson’s number with the Brooklyn Dodgers—will be replaced.

“This was a heartbreaking discovery this morning. I hate to see that the statue was not in one piece,” Johnson said. “But I do want everyone to know that we are undeterred and making sure that that statue gets rebuilt and put back there for our community, for League 42, for the young people. That symbol of hope will only be gone for a short time.”

Meanwhile, League 42, which is a nonprofit organization, has launched a GoFundMe page to get the statue replaced. As of Wednesday morning, it has reached over $120,000 of its $150,000 goal.


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