On Friday, President Joe Biden canceled his predecessor’s proposal for a “National Garden of American Heroes” and reversed former President Donald Trump’s executive orders on the moderation policies of social media platforms and US foreign aid branches.
Biden disbanded Trump’s task force to establish a memorial for his own executive order, which he issued last year. It included sculptures of hundreds of historical American figures, including presidents, celebrities, and pop culture icons, and Trump envisioned it as a “massive outdoor park showcasing the statues of the greatest Americans ever to live.”
Trump compiled a list of over 30 names, including Davy Crockett, Billy Graham, Whitney Houston, Harriet Tubman, and Antonin Scalia, but no site was chosen, and no congressional garden was approved.
Trump has consistently condemned protesters’ desecration and the overthrow of ancient temples in Minneapolis last year, in response to racial inequality and police violence.
“We’re going to raise American patriots for the next generation,” Trump declared last July at Mount Rushmore, where he unveiled his garden plan. “We’re going to write the next thrilling episode of the American saga. And we’ll teach our children that they live in a legendary country where nothing can deter them or hinder them from succeeding. “
According to Trump’s executive order, the garden should prioritize monuments to former presidents, people, and events related to Europe and North America, the founding of the United States, and the abolition of slavery.
“None will have lived a perfect life, but all will be worthy of honoring, remembering, and researching,” the order now revoked.
Other presidential Trump directives have also been withdrawn.
The Biden order also reversed Trump’s order from May 2020, which directed the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission to prosecute social media sites for labeling or deleting posts or entire accounts, claiming that it limited free expression. This order was released prior to Trump’s suspension from Twitter and Facebook as a result of the Capitol insurgency on January 6th.
In addition, Trump’s directives to mark all US foreign assistance with a single “logo that represents the ideals and kindness of the American people” will be terminated in December 2020.
Trump’s June 2020 order, which directed the federal government to “proceed to the fullest extent permitted by federal law,” also revoked the prohibition on vandalism and damage to federal statutes. Following the death of George Floyd in police custody during national demonstrations against racial discrimination, the order was issued in response to the defacement of monuments, especially those honoring the Confederacy.
Biden also criticized a Trump proclamation requiring immigrants to show that such health plans would be covered within 30 days of arrival in the United States in order for them to cover medical costs.
“My administration is committed to improving access to healthy, accessible medical care,” Biden said after rescinding the proclamation. “We can do so without barring non-citizens who are legally emigrating to the country but lack significant financial resources or do not have a limited list of qualifying plans to purchase health insurance coverage.”
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