A controversial New York Central Park statue of Dr. J. Marion Sims, who performed experiments on enslaved women, has been defaced, CBS New York reported on Sunday.
Vandals spray-painted the word "racist" on the back of the statue and also covered the eyes and neck in spray-paint, police said. City workers cleaned off most of the paint and a metal barrier had been erected in front of the statue to protect it.
Last week New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito called for the removal of the statue of Sims, the New York Daily News reported.
The monument came under scrutiny after the deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, earlier this month, which was organized to protest the removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee from Emancipation Park.
Mark-Viverito said that Sims, who has been hailed as the father of modern gynecology, performed operations on slaves without getting their consent or giving them anesthesia, CBS New York reported.
"Under the guise of medical advancement, they were probed, they were tortured and they were dehumanized," Mark-Viverito said.
She stressed that "We must send a definitive message that the despicable acts of James Marion Sims are repugnant and reprehensible."
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said the statue of Sims is one of several being reviewed by a city commission for possible removal as "symbols of hate on city property."
The commission is working on determining the criteria for what statues will be taken down.
© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.