Update 4/7/2015: In a brilliant move, a hologram has now replaced the removed Snowden statue.
[dropcap size=small]N[/dropcap]ew York, NY – NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden’s newly erected statue in Brooklyn park was removed the very same day by the New York City Parks Department, proving that local government is just as corrupt and freedom-hating as it is at the federal level.
An unknown sculptor installed a full-standing, “permanent” statue in tribute of National Security Agency whistle-blower Edward Snowden in Fort Greene Park on the morning of Monday, April 6th. The monument itself was apparently installed as part of a larger exhibit at the park known as The Ship Martyrs, which is intended to honor the lost lives of the 11,000 American prisoners at war aboard British ships during the American Revolution.
In other words, the Snowden statue stuck out like a sore thumb. Whether to make a point or not, the end result was inevitable – mere hours after the statue was installed (reported to be a whopping 100 pounds), it was whisked away by members of the NYC Parks Department, as seen below:
But according to reporter Bucky Turco of Animal, the location of the Snowden bust was absolutely intentional:
“The idea for the Snowden tribute was conceived about a year ago by two New York City-based artists with a history of pulling off notable public interventions. They linked up with a renowned sculptor on the West Coast who was sympathetic to their cause. The artists admit that Snowden probably wouldn’t approve of the project, since he never wanted the leaks to be about him, but they hope he’d understand why they did it.”
While the artists themselves are indeed unnamed as of this reporting, their own intentions regarding the message and the purpose of the seemingly inauspicious location of the bust itself have been spelled out in a statement:
“Fort Greene’s Prison Ship Martyrs Monument is a memorial to American POWs who lost their lives during the Revolutionary War. We have updated this monument to highlight those who sacrifice their safety in the fight against modern-day tyrannies. It would be a dishonor to those memorialized here to not laud those who protect the ideals they fought for, as Edward Snowden has by bringing the NSA’s Fourth Amendment-violating surveillance programs to light. All too often, figures who strive to uphold these ideals have been cast as criminals rather than in bronze.
Our goal is to bring a renewed vitality to the space and prompt even more visitors to ponder the sacrifices made for their freedoms. We hope this inspires them to reflect upon the responsibility we all bear to ensure our liberties exist long into the future.”
Indeed, friends. Indeed.