Speaking with Charlier Rose on Tuesday, Reverend Al Sharpton stated his belief that the public should no longer fund the Jefferson Memorial located in Washington D.C. due to the fact that the second president was a slave owner.
Sharpton made his comment after Rose asked if he believed that the Jefferson Memorial should be removed.
“I think that people need to understand when people that were in enslaved and robbed of even the right to marry — and had forced sex with their slave masters — this is personal to us,” Sharpton said. “My great grandfather was a slave in South Carolina—owned by the family, ended up, Strom Thurmond was one of them, a newspaper discovered—so this is personal. This is not some kind of removed discussion for us. Our families were victims of this.”
“When you look at the fact that public monuments are supported by public funds, you’re asking me to subsidize the insult to my family,” Sharpton added.
“Then I repeat: Thomas Jefferson had slaves,” Rose pressed.
“And I repeat that the public should not be paying to uphold somebody who has had that kind of background,” Sharpton repeated.
Check out the full exchange above!