Biden issued an executive order on Friday that revokes a handful of orders from former President Trump, including several tied to the defacement and vandalism of public monuments amid last year’s racial justice protests.
Biden’s order negates an order from June 2020 that made it the policy of the United States to prosecute people to the “fullest extent” of the law if they damage or deface public property.
The order from Trump also said it was the policy of the U.S. to withhold federal support from state and local governments and law enforcement agencies if they fail to protect public monuments and spaces from vandalism.
BLM Assualt On Monuments of American Historical Figures…Even Abraham Lincoln
The May 2020 death of George Floyd, a Black man, while in Minneapolis police custody had sparked a wave of racial justice protests – some of which escalated into violent looting, rioting, and tearing down or defacement of statues of American historical figures.
“All statues in the National Garden should be lifelike or realistic representations of the persons they depict, not abstract or modernist representations,” a July 2020 order said.
“My Administration will not abide an assault on our collective national memory,” Trump said in the order.
In addition to the national garden language, a July 2020 order had set up a task force for building and rebuilding monuments and had decried the tearing down of statues of historical figures like George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.
Biden’s order also reverses a May 2020 order from Trump that attempted to clarify the kinds of immunity technology companies have related to the content that flows across their platforms.
Trump issued the order after Twitter attached a fact-checking label to one of his tweets about mail-in voting.
Twitter permanently suspended the president’s account in January, citing its policies against inciting violence.
The Friday order also revokes an order from Trump directing U.S. foreign assistance to be clearly identified as “American aid” and an order the former president issued in his final days in office directing agencies to clearly identify whether the regulations they issue are subject to criminal penalties for violations.