Mayor Harmon opposed to statue of Roosevelt, noting gender

January 11, 2019

Mayor Heidi Harmon

The city of San Luis Obispo is considering placing a monument to President Teddy Roosevelt in Mitchell Park, prompting Mayor Heidi Harmon to question why there is a need for “more monuments of white men.” [Cal Coast Times]

In recent months, former SLO councilman John Ashbaugh has spearheaded a campaign to honor Roosevelt, the United States’ 26th president, for helping launch the conservation movement and for once visiting San Luis Obispo. Ashbaugh’s plan calls for a bronze statue of Roosevelt by artist Paula Zima to be placed in Mitchell Park.

“We have have an extraordinary chance to honor Roosevelt with a monument to his legacy as one of the founders of our nation’s environmental movement, along with John Muir,” Ashbaugh stated last week in a Facebook post. “One week before meeting John Muir and traveling with him to Yosemite, Roosevelt spoke in San Luis Obispo, May 9, 1903.”

Harmon, SLO’s recently reelected mayor, responded to the Facebook post with a string of comments.

“Wondering why we need more monuments of white men at this point,” Harmon wrote. “Is it not way past time to honor a border group?”

Harmon inserted in one of her comments a link to an opinion article in The Guardian headlined, “Across America, racist and sexist monuments give way to a new future.” The mayor then continued arguing her case.

“We have no monument whatsoever to any women in this beautiful city — why would we put resources to this in light of that? Just saying,” Harmon wrote. “I just don’t understand why we continue to put all of our resources into only lifting up white men and there’s close to zero resources put into white women or people of color whatsoever in terms of monuments etc.”

Ashbaugh responded, saying Roosevelt is just the start and he would support more public art honoring important local leaders of all races, ethnicities, gender identities and causes.

The Roosevelt monument proposal is expected to go before San Luis Obispo’s parks commission next month.

Godless Heathen

The mayor needs to look up the term Dunnning Kruger Effect.


I think that the Mayor may be on to something here. I’m sure that with all of the artists in SlO that a transgender, rainbow version of the mayor could be bronzed with a flower in her hair. The park would be a wonderful place for the statue where all of the pigeons could come to roost and defecate along with being a urinal for the homeless. How much more liberal could you get?

Jon Tatro

Teddy doesn’t want to live in the liberal shithole called SLO.


Mitchell Park. World renown as a campground for visiting trans-migratory. Instead, invest in easy-clean urinals.


Now that you mention Mitchell park i went past it a couple Sundays ago and counted 14 bums or derelicts laying all over the place, with their garbage piled all around them.


Just put up a statue of a hound and call it done.


Just come out with it, your suggestive ignorant and gender biased/racially motivated comments indicates the desire to develop a bronze statue replicating you, a white progressive narcissistic female. Be honest and represent everyone regardless of their identity’s past or present.


Should we honor great men? Mayor Harmon and I both agree that great men should be honored. Ditto women and great people of all gender. Great people deserve honor commensurate with their greatness.

But what if a great man is also Caucasian, or “white” as Mayor Harmon states that Teddy Roosevelt was? BTW, do we know that Teddy Roosevelt identified as a white male? Are we sure? But I digress…

If a great man is white does their race, gender and skin color make them less honorable than another combination of gender and race? That’s the question we need to answer. Does being white make people less honorable?

Or, does being a non-white/male race/gender combination make a person worthy of more honor?

Let me suggest to Mayor Harmon a third way of looking at the situation:

1. Put up TR monument at the expense of monuments for other race/gender combinations

2. Put up a monument to a more honorable race/gender combination


3. San Luis Obispo does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, hiring and firing of staff, selection of volunteers and vendors, erecting of monuments and provision of services. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, clients, volunteers, subcontractors, vendors, and clients.

San Luis Obispo is an equal opportunity monument recognizer. We will not discriminate and will take affirmative action measures to ensure against discrimination in monuments, employment, recruitment, advertisements for employment, compensation, termination, upgrading, promotions, and other conditions of monument recognition and/or employment against any employee or job applicant on the bases of race, color, gender, national origin, age, religion, creed, disability, veteran’s status, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.

TR was a great man. He deserves a monument.


City of SLO may not officially discriminate against military personnel, but unofficially they go after them. Just ask the couple of reservists who used to work for the City. They had one guy apologizing to his coworkers when he had to go on orders. Progressivism is the City’s unofficial (official) religion.


Heidi, if you want to honor diversity, how about honoring diversity of opinion, diversity of political views, diversity of thought rather than just window-dressing diversity with people who create a pretense of diversity but really all just march to your drummer.


Shame on the people who voted for this divder!


Heidi claims sexism and racism are rampant. She is promoting judging people by their race and sex. And she is so out of touch she doesn’t know that all the statues in SLO are of people of color. Give her time, hate will increase in our community.


She’s a pro at tossing around all the looney lefty buzzwords.

Go Heidi, you’re giving Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren a run for their money.

You listen to one, you’ve heard them all.