Indonesia Considering Tearing Down Obama Statue


Indonesian authorities say they are seriously considering a petition that wants a statue of President Obama torn down -- just a month after it was unveiled.

The statue shows Obama as a boy, and is known as "Little Barry" -- the name he went by when he lived in Indonesia for four years as a child. It is located in central Jakarta's Menteng Park, a short walk from the elementary school Obama attended.

But a Facebook group called "Take Down the Barack Obama Statue in Menteng Park" claims Obama has done nothing for Indonesia, and that he should not be honored in such a way:

"Barack Obama has yet to make a significant contribution to the Indonesian nation. We could say Obama only ate and s*** in Menteng. He spent his subsequent days living as an American.

"For the dignity of a sovereign nation, Barack Obama's monument in Menteng Park must be removed immediately."

So far 55,000 people have joined the group, enough to make officials in Indonesia take the protest seriously. "We've been discussing for the past two weeks what to do with the statue... whether to take it down, move it elsewhere or retain it. We're finding the best solution," Jakarta parks agency official Dwi Bintarto said.

The bronze was designed by Indonesian artists and depicts the boy Obama dressed in shorts and a T-shirt with a butterfly perched on his hand.

"The statue is of Obama as a child, not as the U.S. president. His relatives and friends who erected it said it's meant to motivate children to study hard and dream big," Bintarto said.

Obama said he and his family would visit Indonesia this year. Whether or not his statue will still be there when they arrive remains to be seen.


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