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Maryland Just Removed a Statue Of a Pro-Slavery Court Justice From State House

Maryland officials on Friday removed a statue of a 19th century pro-slavery Chief Justice Chief Justice Roger Taney, who in his landmark 1857 decision to keep slavery said: “The negro might justly and lawfully be reduced to slavery for his benefit.” Legal scholars say it is one of the worst decisions in the Supreme Court’s history.

Crews in state capital Annapolis hitched straps overnight to the 145-year-old bronze statue outside State House and lifted it from its base with a crane, according to media reports and social media postings.

“While we cannot hide from our history – nor should we – the time has come to make clear the difference between properly acknowledging our past and glorifying the darkest chapters of our history,” Maryland Governor Larry Hogan said in a statement on Wednesday.

Authorities and protesters have since Saturday removed monuments in several U.S. cities to the Civil War Confederacy of states that held slaves, arguing they are inappropriate and offensive.

President Donald Trump decried on Thursday the removal of the “beautiful” monuments, echoing the views of white nationalists.

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