Rekindling ugly memories of the summer of 2020 when anarchist vandals burned and desecrated public memorials across America, the statue of a California rancher had its head cut off in a Sacramento park the day after Christmas.
No one yet knows who did the dirty work. We may never know. Police are investigating.
It could have been a random act of mindless destruction. More probably it was a political hit designed to deliver an anti-cattle rancher, anti-landowner nasty-gram.
Charles Swanston, the man whose stone figure lost its head, is hardly a household name. He was a father and grandfather, the son of Irish immigrants. His wife died young. When he came to California after the Civil War he ran a butcher shop. Through hard work and pluck his fortune steadily grew and before his death in the early 1900s he was one of the biggest cattlemen in the state.
His son George loved and respected him so much that after Charles died, George paid for a memorial statue and fountain to be built in a little neighborhood park in the Sacramento Valley, a place he adored. This is the statue, and this was the man, whose legacy has been desecrated.
It is very possible that the Butchers of Land Park, working like grave robbers in the night, found Swanston’s life work objectionable. How they chose to register their protest tells you all you need to know about them, and what the only response to them must be.
They must be opposed.
They may have also been striking out against the inscription on the statue. It is dedicated: “To the pioneers.” These days are tough times for pioneers, the early arrivals who were on the ground floor of building California and the nation. They don’t get much respect. Some of the most famous ones—you know their names—are constantly under attack.
No figure in history was perfect. Nor were their deeds. Some of the people who did great things for humanity also did deplorable things and were nasty human beings. Go figure.
If you would, please name a single prominent figure today—political, cultural, scientific, social, military, historical—who has a spotless personal life and an equally unimpeachable record of achievement in his or her field.
Go ahead. I’m waiting. Name your pronouns. He, she, it, they.
I’m still waiting.
Okay, I’m done waiting. Fact is, human beings and the things they do are pretty messy. Messy is in our DNA, not spotless. If the revisionist Left plans to lop off the head of every statue of every person who did bad while doing good, parks around the U.S. will be filled with Headless Horseman-type memorials. Not a good look.
Then again, maybe that is the plan. Maybe that is what the anarchists, academics, cultural Marxists, Uniparty corporatists, and holier-than-thou Group Thinkers are up to. Smear the greatness of America’s past. Wipe our historical slate clean, obliterate it, so that those in power can rewrite it to suit their needs and agenda at any given moment.
History is a kind of battleground. As has been said, those who control the past control the future. Charles Swanston is only a minor figure. But his son’s loving tribute to him has now become a casualty in a major cultural and informational war.
- Charles Swanston’s Headless Rancher Statue is a Casualty of War - January 4, 2023
- They Did Their Jobs at Pearl Harbor, and We Are All the Better For It - December 7, 2022
- While California Burns, Politicians Fiddle: One Rancher’s Story - November 30, 2022