DODGE CITY, Kan., July 24, 2020 /Christian Newswire/ -- The following is an open letter to President Trump from Rev. Christopher J Conner:

Dear President Trump,

Having gown up in Chicago, I was deeply grieved this morning to see that Mayor Lightfoot ordered the removal of a historic monument to Christopher Columbus. This comes on the heels of the desecration of a historic monument of George Washington.

You see, my father Jack was one of the men who spent 45 years of his life building up Chicago, not tearing it down. He took part in the preservation of historic monuments like these, laying the steel for the bridges over the Chicago River and rehabilitating many historic structures including the Buckingham Fountain in Grant Park.

Mr. President, based on my own years of preserving and rehabilitating historic buildings and good knowledge of the Historic Preservation Act, I would like to appeal for an executive order that can take historic preservation of monuments out of the hands of government and feckless mayors like Lori Lightfoot and put it in the hands of American citizens.

I appeal for an order that allows historic preservation groups and organizations that cherish, celebrate, and protect our shared history and heritage apply directly to the National Parks Services for the protection of monuments and other structures that represent the American ideals and historic figures, regardless of the politics of this age, that mark our shared national story.

Groups like the American Legion, the VFW, Irish American Associations, Italian American Associations, Daughters of the Confederacy, the Buffalo Soldiers Associations, and small groups of everyday citizens bound together by brotherly love and affection for America, often the descendants of the citizens who raised money and built these historic monuments in honor of this great country and our people, should be able to petition our federal government directly to protect our national identity and historic monuments.

While states are typically responsible for deciding what is historic or not, the Preservation Act does not prohibit direct petition to the federal government for the protection of our national history, which goes back to the 1400's.

Citizens should have available to them a streamlined petition for the designation of historic landmarks of national interest. Let the states control what monuments have state significance. This form should be available online for a very small fee and not require an organization be a non-profit or an official historic preservation group.

Once a petition for the recognition of a historic monument as a national interest is received, it should be ordered that it has temporary protected status until a decision is made. A receipt of the application should be printable online to be registered by the citizens with the local authorities.

While an application is being processed and after it is approved, the historic monument or landmark would be protected by federal law, allowing for 10 years of imprisonment for any person that defaces the landmark or any elected or bureaucratic government official that orders it to be removed or destroyed. The Department of Homeland Security may be dispatched during civil unrest to protect our history.

The order could also include landmarks that were given any amount of federal monies or grants to build. Where the property is private, or say a church, standing could be given to any stakeholders who are citizens of the United States of America and can show an association to that monument or organization.

Mr. President, our history is who we are. Our monuments and landmarks not only call us to remember the challenges we've faced and overcome as Americans, but also the ideals and ethos that make America the greatest country in human history. We cannot let that be erased from the national conscience or permit the common history we all share to be used to alienate the men and women like my father who built this nation.

Yours in Christ,
Rev. Christopher J Conner
Dodge City, Kansas

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