Mitch Landrieu, from his high horse, ripped off the beautiful equestrian monument to General G. T. Beauregard, a storied figure from Louisiana’s history. In his political misinformation campaign the past two years, Mitch has falesly stereotyped Beauregard into the ignorantly narrow label of “white supremacist.”
Beauregard graduated from West Point 2nd in the class of 1838. He was an Army Corps engineer and saved the Customs House. He fought in the Mexican-American War. He was appointed to Superintendent of West Point Academy, although a week later he was unjustly fired for being from a Southern state. He led Confederate forces in various Southern states during the War for Southern Independence, most notably at the First Bull Run and later for his expert defense of the city of Charleston, a city where he is still loved and admired.
“Asked if Beauregard would call for volunteers rather than yield Charleston, the general replied, ‘I certainly shall…and rather than give up Charleston I will even make an appeal to the ladies.’”
After 22 years of fundraising, the people of New Orleans finally got their tribute to Louisiana’s native son. World renowned sculptor Alexander Doyle crafted the Beauregard Equestrian Monument as a likeness to the General during the Battle of Shiloh.
102 years later, like bumbling idiots, New Orleans Fire Department employees, once again led by NOFD Superintendent Tim McConnell, took seven hours and a dozen attempts to rig lifting straps before they finally hoisted Beauregard up on high, before lowering him to be hidden away like the lost ark of the covenant. New Orleans was once again converted into a military state as the masked firefighters, in bullet proof vests and with snipers covering them across Bayou St. John, carried out Mitch’s crusade. The face of the monument pedestal was broken off and now stands fittingly as war-like debris at the entrance to City Park. The elegant entrance to the New Orleans Museum of Art is now void of an exquisite artwork as the result of the City Park Improvement Association burying their collective heads in the sand and hoping this blew over without NOCPIA being outed as owners.
Mitch Landrieu dishonorably discharged Pierre Gustav Toutant Beauregard, the Little Creole, Napoleon in Gray, West Point graduate, U.S. military veteran, and a Louisiana leader in both times of war and aftermath.
The Monumental Task Committee has fought Mitch’s removal to the very end. The non-profit has cleaned and maintained monuments throughout New Orleans since Mitch Landrieu has held public office: that’s a long time! MTC was cleaning and restoring these monuments while Mitch Landrieu voted for Confederate Flag license plates. The preservationists released a statement after the Fire Department finally removed Beauregard, and they said it all:
“Mitch Landrieu removed a monument to G.T. Beauregard, arguably the most historically significant Creole to ever live. This is difficult to comprehend for a number of reasons—the monument is on the National Register of Historic Places, its removal disgraces Louisiana people of Creole descent, and Beauregard was one of Louisiana’s first civil rights leaders. The memorial that was taken down was to a man who worked to advance race relations through the 1873 Louisiana Unification Movement—contrast that against Landrieu whose actions and comments are entirely intolerant and divisive. The practice of erecting monuments to honor the memory of beloved figures and leaders has been a tradition throughout the history of mankind. Mayor Landrieu’s actions are an insult to New Orleanians who came before us—the veterans, widows, parents, children, and citizens—who donated their personal money to build and place these monuments where they stand to honor the memory of their fallen family members,” said Pierre McGraw, President of the Monumental Task Committee. “The city’s refusal to wait until the ownership of the Beauregard Monument could be determined by a court of law proves how non-transparent this process has been. How the city can get away with moving a 102-year-old monument, against the advice of the Lt. Governor and Attorney General, and without first proving ownership, defies any sort of logic.”
Few New Orleanians knew much about Beauregard in June 2015. And to this day it is painfully evident that Mitch Landrieu is ignorant of the man and has likely never read a book on Beauregard or Davis or Lee or Liberty Place.
The term Creole has been bastardized the last 100 years, but Beauregard represented the true Creoles of Louisiana. While he came from the old French aristocracy, he never owned slaves and was progressive in racial equality. PGTB’s work in civil rights separates himself from any other Louisiana leader of his era. Here is part of the Louisiana Unification Movement plan, led by Beauregard, as described by T. Harry Williams in his biography on the General:
“Their report advocated complete political equality for the Negro, an equal division of state offices between the races, and a plan whereby Negroes would become landowners. It denounced discrimination because of color in hiring laborers or in selecting directors of corporations, and called for the abandonment of segregation in public conveyances, public places, railroads, steamboats, and public schools.”
The chatter will not focus on Beauregard’s progressive actions or that he is a United States veteran, it’s just “slavery” and “traitor.” One of the best lines from the Williams Biography, and what should be a great American military quote, was recorded during the Mexican American War:
“In his best theatrical manner, Beauregard replied that American receipts were ‘written in blood and signed with a bayonet.’”
Another night, another militant fascist government action, another U.S. veteran down, another round of political posturing. Beauregard’s quote on politicians is as true today as it was during the war.
“If certain minds cannot understand the difference between patriotism, the highest civic virtue, and office-seeking, the lowest civic occupation, I pity them from the bottom of my heart.”
That quote should be read on the Louisiana Senate floor to remind the elected officials that HB 71 supports memorials to patriotic veterans, those of the highest civic virtue. The politicians like John Alario, from their lowest civic occupation, do not have the courage to stand up for military memorials around the state. Add Alario, John Bel Edwards, the City Park Board of Directors, Billy Nungesser, Jeff Landry, Susan Guidry, Latoya Cantrell, and New Orleans’ Inspector General Ed Quatrevaux to the list of people who did not do anything to stop Louisiana from losing its most significant Creole.
Mitch will probably make the rounds on network news shows today, an important part of his daily duties as Mayor of Landrieu Land. The Monumental Task Committee has called Mitch Landrieu out for erasing a monument to a civil rights, racial equality leader, no local, state, or national news organizations will ask The Great Divider about it.