Mai Pham spotted the fire burning around the base of the 7-foot-tall, white marble statue about 6 a.m., the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported. The statue was discolored by the fire and a second statue nearby was more seriously damaged, the newspaper said. A burned aerosol can and matches were found nearby.
It’s good they were able to put it out before the whole area went up in flames, that’s for sure. I don’t really understand what people hope to achieve with tactics like this. The article mentions a few other examples of vandalism Pham has experienced. I want to say it’s because his crap-filled yard with a 17 foot high statue makes him a “good” target and easy pickings. Of course, I’m simplifying. It could just as easily be what Pham implies: racially motivated.
“This not only hurts our family. It hurts … Vietnamese refugees around the country,” Tuan Pham said, adding later many Vietnamese refugees came to the United States for the freedom it offers for people to express their beliefs.
Vietnam’s communist leadership was hard on every religion in that country, not just Catholicism, so I see what he’s getting at here. “Land of the Free” and all that. America being iconic as a refuge for those facing religious persecution, like the Puritans and everyone else who ditched Europe with the hope of a better future an ocean away.
Hopefully the vandal gets caught bragging about it or something.