Victor Davis Hanson on removing Confederate statues and the erasing of American History

What began as a call to remove the statues of some Confederate leaders has escalated into a full-on debate over whether getting rid of historical monuments is really helping support racial equality or simply erasing a part of American history. 

 Victor Davis Hanson, a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, put the debate into historical context.

“We're like the Soviet Union in the 1930s when Trotsky's picture was removed everywhere... Or when the Nazis re-named 1932/1933 as Year Zero, and the Taliban blew up the Bayamon statues," Hanson told Fox News. "So that's what we're doing, only we're a little bit more sophisticated and saying that we're doing it for equality and inclusion and equity. But we're really not."


Where did all of this rage and hatred for American history come from? Hanson says it is fostered in universities that take advantage of students’ lack of knowledge and instill in them this idea that their country is actively working against them.

“They don't have a lot of knowledge, so they don't know who Braxton Bragg was. They have no idea about who Columbus met when he went to the New World. They don't have any idea of Montezuma or genocidal practices by the Aztecs,” he said. “But they do have advocacy that white, male, Christian heterosexuals, they've been told, are the culprits and the source of all their problems. So, when you're young and you're in debt and you're arrogant and you're ignorant, that's a fatal mix.”


Hanson believes we are in the midst of a revolution. Today’s protesters who are in the streets tearing down statues in an attempt to erase history are a mirror image of past revolutionaries, he said.

“They're very arrogant. They're sure of their moral superiority because they're ignorant and they have no self-doubt," Hanson explained. "True of most revolutionaries, they have no self-doubt and they become cannibalistic in their zeal for perfection, perfection, perfection."

Hanson argued that this cannibalization of their own side has already begun. Careers have been ruined and public figures have become victims of character's assassination for the "crime" of voicing an original, contrarian thought in what has been dubbed the "cancel culture."

"A lot of these students, if they had seen the other paradigms -- and we have a lot of them, we have them in Latin American, we have them in Africa, we have them in China, we have Russia. Those paradigms do not allow them free speech and the material prosperity and security to voice their opinions," said Hanson. "A lot of people, I don't know how they're surviving. But for three weeks they've been doing nothing but protesting because they're products of a capitalist system. So do they really want an indigenous system?"