With one astounding question, "Fox & Friends" host Brian Kilmeade managed to equate a memorial erected in honor of the 2,996 victims of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to Confederate monuments that stand as lingering symbols of treason and human bondage.
In an interview with Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke on Monday, Kilmeade insensitively inserted the ongoing national controversy surrounding the removal of Confederate statues into a discussion about the Flight 93 memorial erected near Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
"Do you worry 100 years from now someone’s going to try to take that memorial down like they’re trying to remake our memorials today,” the right-wing pundit asked.
Zinke hesitated before preparing a diplomatic response.
“Well, I’m one that believes that you know we should learn from history,” he responded. “And I think our monuments are part of our country’s history. We can learn from it. Since we don’t put up statues of Jesus, everyone’s going to fall morally short. And I think reflecting on our history, both good and bad, is a powerful statement and part of our DNA."
"We live in a great country," he continued. "And monuments are not Republican, Democrat, Independent. Monuments are a tribute to all of us."
While Zinke's opinion on the subject remains a touch vague, Kilmeade couldn't have made his stance more apparent by comparing a monument honoring those murdered by brutal ideologies to monuments symbolic of brutal ideologies. The two are not remotely comparable, and all one must do is take stock of the crowds gathered to mourn the loss of innocent American lives and the crowds marching to uphold the vestiges of racism.
Sept. 11 brought America together in the aftermath of tragedy — the Confederacy nearly tore it apart.
Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters photographer Mark Makela