NYC Removes Statue Honoring 19th Century Surgeon Who Experimented On Female Slaves

The Dr. J. Marion Sims statue in Central

The Dr. J. Marion Sims statue in Central

NY on Tuesday removed from Central Park the statue of a 19th century gynecologist who experimented on enslaved black women without anesthesia, as the United States increasingly confronts racism in its history.

Considered a pioneer in gynecological surgery, Sims' legacy has been reconsidered after records revealed that the surgeon operated on 12 enslaved women-without anesthesia. This is why the special Commission established by NY mayor bill de Blasio to identify "symbols of hate", decided that the monument to such a controversial personality has no place in the city centre. He invented the speculum and pioneered a surgical technique for repairing a vesicovaginal fistula, a complication of obstructed childbirth.

The decision to move the statue from Fifth Avenue and 103rd Street was made following recommendations from a mayoral panel that reviewed statues and monuments throughout the city. The statue will be restored and relocated to Greenwood Cemetery in Brooklyn where Dr. Sims is buried. But critics say his use of enslaved African-American women as experimental subjects was unethical. "Sims is not our hero", shouted the others.

City Councilwoman Inez Barron (D) agreed, saying at Monday's hearing, "Green-Wood Cemetery has said they're willing to take it".

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When the statue is put up in the cemetery, it will reportedly be accompanied by information about Sims' experiments and history. The statue, erected on the edge of Central Park in East Harlem in 1894, is being taken down on Tuesday after sitting there for more than 100 years.

In the beginning of 2018, the Commission determined the fate of the most controversial monuments, including the legendary Explorer and discoverer of America Christopher Columbus.

Some argued that the statue shouldn't be relocated, but removed from NYC entirely.

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