This statue, known as Triumph of Civic Virtue, was unveiled in 1922 and placed in front of City Hall. In 1941, it was moved to the corner of Queens Boulevard and Union Turnpike in Kew Garden, Queens. And in 2011, Congressman Anthony Weiner and City Council member Julissa Ferreras want it sold off on Craigslist. As CBS News reports:
The statue features a nude, muscled man holding a sword behind his head standing atop two bare-chested mermaids, who look more like Medusa than Ariel, slithering at his feet. The statue is meant to portray civic virtue triumphing over vice and corruption ….
Weiner insists such symbolism is sexist and calls the statue an “eyesore.” Others say the statue is a treasured work of art, and far from selling it off, want funding to get it restored. But most people are probably wondering why we are having this conversation at all, nearly 90 years after the statue debuted, and at a time when debating the political correctness of statues is pretty low on the priority list.