Was he a military hero or racist villain?
For many weeks, numerous BLM protests have taken place throughout the US, during which monuments of the Polish statesman and military leader Tadeusz Kosciuszko were vandalised. As photos of the defaced statue went viral, historians and Polish nationals emphasised the need for protesters to educate themselves on historical figures prior to vandalising their monuments.
Kosciuszko was not only a key figure in wars of independence for both the US and Poland, he was also a dedicated abolitionist. Furthermore, his will specified that all his American property was to be sold, using the money to free slaves and provide them with education in order to give them the opportunity to lead independent lives.
Sadly, following the third review by the US Supreme Court, Kosciuszko’s money was never used for its intended purpose. However, that does not make him an accomplice in the oppression of African-Americans. In fact, such monuments should be used as symbols of support for the movement dating back to the 18th century.
By Nicole Maka-Sprawa