Smithsonian Rep denies reports that the museum plans to preserve gazebo where Tamir Rice died, but acknowledged they are helping someone else who wants to do it.
The Smithsonian Museum has issued a statement that the institute is not looking into preservation of the gazebo where 12-year-old Tamir Rice was gunned down by a Cleveland cop.
Media outlets reported on Monday, May 2, that William Pretzer, a senior history curator at the Smithsonian Museum, sent an email to Cleveland City officials requesting they delayed demolition of the site because the museum was interested in preserving it for historical reasons.
However, La Fleur Paysour, Media Relations Representative of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, has denied the reports and said that the museum has no knowledge of any plans to preserve the gazebo.
“Contrary to reports, the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture is neither leading nor participating in any efforts to preserve the Cleveland gazebo,” Paysour said in a statement released Tuesday.
Paysour also said that although the museum is not involved in any person’s or organization’s preservation efforts, they were advising Black Lives Matter on options for saving the gazebo.
“We’re only helping someone else who is interested in doing that. …. Facilitating for them to get the conversations going,” Paysour said.
Although this site reminds us of one of the saddest and most cruel form of police brutality – the killing of an innocent child – its historical significance require that we save it for the world and future generations to know the truth that once upon a time, African-American children were regarded as criminals and killed by police just because they were black.
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