In the wake of George Floyd’s murder and subsequent Black Lives Matter protests all around the world, six-time Formula One Champion Lewis Hamilton is applauding the destruction of a slave trader’s statue.
Hamilton shared a video on Instagram originally posted by civil rights activist Shaun King. He wrote: “I do not condone violence or criminal acts, but you have had plenty of time to do this yourselves and haven’t. Power to the people.”
In the video, a statue of Edward Colston can be seen being pulled down as protesters cheer. Colston was a white slave trader in the 17th century. The protesters then rolled the statue into Bristol Harbor.
“Edward Colston was a monster who bought, sold, and traded Africans, human beings and forced them into slavery until they died. Nobody who did this should be honored. It was/is terrorism. Now. Then. He never should’ve had a statue,” King wrote on Instagram.
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I DO NOT CONDONE VIOLENCE OR CRIMINAL ACTS BUT YOU HAVE HAD PLENTY OF TIME TO DO THIS YOURSELVES AND HAVEN’T. POWER TO THE PEOPLE✊🏾. #Repost @shaunking ・・・ Edward Colston was a monster who bought, sold, and traded Africans, human beings, and forced them into slavery until they died. Nobody who did this should be honored. It was/is terrorism. Now. Then. He never should’ve had a statue. I’m proud of the activists and organizers in Bristol, in the United Kingdom, who tore this down. TEAR THEM ALL DOWN. Everywhere. I support this
Hamilton Speaks Out Against Racism
This isn’t the first time Hamilton has used his platform to speak out in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Earlier this month, the British racing driver took to Instagram to urge his fans to speak out against racial injustice.
“Please do not sit in silence, no matter the color of your skin. Black Lives Matter,” he wrote.
“I am completely overcome with rage at the sight of such blatant disregard for the lives of our people,” he continued. “The injustice that we are seeing our brothers and sisters face all over the world time and time again is disgusting, and MUST stop.”
Slave Statues Toppled Around The World
A number of statues of slave traders and slave owners have been defaced and torn down around the world.
The head of Christopher Colombus was removed from a statue in Boston. Protesters also defaced and burned a statue located in Antwerp, Belgium of Leopold II. The Belgian king was responsible for the killing of millions of Congolese people. The statue was removed by officials.
Following the toppling of the Colston statue, London mayor Sadiq Khan ordered a review of all of the statues and street names in London. He said any that had links to slavery should be taken down, reports the BBC.
A statue of slave trader Robert Milligan was subsequently removed from outside the Museum of London Docklands.