‘Beyond The Pale’: Rep. Jim Banks Will Propose Amendment To Make Monument Vandalism A Federal Offense

Screenshot/Fox News

Virginia Kruta Associate Editor
Font Size:

Republican Indiana Rep. Jim Banks plans to introduce an amendment that would make monument vandalism a federal offense.

Banks explained that he wanted to amend the 2003 Veteran’s Memorial Preservation Act to include statues of “former U.S. presidents and Founding Fathers,” which would make vandalism of those monuments and statues a federal offense and impose a potential prison sentence of up to ten years. (RELATED: Jim Banks Says China Could Repay US For Coronavirus, Starting With ‘Significant Debt Forgiveness’)

“Attacks on our national heroes denigrate what makes us American and aim to destroy what binds us as Americans. They’re serious crimes that deserve serious punishment,” Banks explained.

Banks told the Daily Caller that his constituents — and he believed most Americans — were angry and fed up over the chaos and destruction that had taken over a number of cities in recent weeks, culminating in a number of monuments and statues being either defaced or torn down by rioters.

In the last month alone, protesters toppled statues of “Star-Spangled Banner” author Francis Scott Key, President George Washington, Union General Ulysses S. Grant and anti-slavery activist Hans Christian Heg — among others. Still others were defaced or removed as a preventive measure in anticipation of  potential vandalization.

“It’s beyond the pale. They’re trying to erase our history,” Banks said. “And so far, people aren’t seeing the kind of leadership they expect from mayors, governors, even Washington. We have to let rioters know that there will be consequences.”

Banks said the proposed amendment would be titled “Defending America’s Heritage and Culture Act.”