Thousands petition to replace Christopher Columbus statue with Prince

Nearly 5,000 people have signed a petition proposing that a statue of Christopher Columbus be taken down and replaced instead by a statue of Prince.

The petitioners pointed to the atrocities against Native Americans as the reason Columbus was not a good representation of Minnesota.

“We, the undersigned, do not believe that Columbus represents the values Minnesotans carry,” the petition reads. “Prince represents Minnesota values and Columbus does not.”

The petition also calls for a second statue to be erected, this one selected by Native Americans.

However, officials have responded saying that a memorial must have statewide significance and that a person must have been dead for at least 10 years first.

“We want to protect this space for the general public and not just for people who want something to commemorate,” said Paul Mandell, of the Capitol Area Architectural and Planning Board.