Cuomo defends Columbus statues for symbolism to Italian Americans

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NEW YORK — New York should keep statues honoring Christopher Columbus even though the brutalization of the West Indies inhabitants he encountered on his voyages to the New World is inexcusable, Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Thursday. Cuomo said Columbus was an important figure for Italian Americans, symbolizing their contribution to New York, and for that reason, he opposes removal of the statues.