President Trump signs an executive order to build the National Garden of American Heroes which will showcase a long list of names to be honored.
In the order signed on Monday, President Donald Trump indicated that the honorees have represented the "American Spirit."
The garden will include statues of Whitney Houston, Kobe Bryant, Vince Lombardi, and Frank Sinatra, according to Fox News.
"In short, each individual has been chosen for embodying the American spirit of daring and defiance, excellence and adventure, courage and confidence, loyalty and love," the President said in the order. "Astounding the world by the sheer power of their example, each one of them has contributed indispensably to America’s noble history, the best chapters of which are still to come."
The Washington Examiner reports:
The list included figures from America’s founding, such as Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin, while honoring military heroes and Presidents Ulysses S. Grant and Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Musicians are featured on the list as well, with Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley slated to receive a place in the garden.
The order, which comes just two days before Trump leaves office, follows his July order that established a task force to plan for construction. Trump said that the task force had completed the first phase of the plan, advising him the project was ready to move forward.
Trump said the purpose of the new garden will be to “show that America is a land of heroes” and that the garden “will be built to reflect the awesome splendor of our country’s timeless exceptionalism.”
Trump further justified the need for the garden, saying that “belief in the greatness and goodness of America has come under attack in recent months and years by a dangerous anti-American extremism that seeks to dismantle our country’s history, institutions, and very identity.”
“The heroes of 1776 have been desecrated, with statues of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Benjamin Franklin vandalized and toppled,” Trump continued. “The dead who gave their lives to end slavery and save the Union during the Civil War have been dishonored, with monuments to Abraham Lincoln, Hans Christian Heg, and the courageous 54th Regiment left damaged and disfigured.”
Funding for the garden will come from the secretary of the interior with available appropriations, while “the Chairperson of the National Endowment for the Arts and the Chairperson of the National Endowment for the Humanities, in consultation with the National Council on the Arts and the National Council on the Humanities”, will contribute one-twelfth of their discretionary funds to the project.
“In the peace and harmony of this vast outdoor park, visitors will come and learn the amazing stories of some of the greatest Americans who have ever lived,” Trump said. “The National Garden will feature a roll call of heroes who deserve honor, recognition, and lasting tribute because of the battles they won, the ideas they championed, the diseases they cured, the lives they saved, the heights they achieved, and the hope they passed down to all of us.”
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