It's time to expunge Woodrow Wilson from official places of honor

In response to these outcries, in 1914, Wilson told The New York Times, “If the colored people made a mistake in voting for me, they ought to correct it.” It would be a valuable educational experience today to correct this mistake, and the historical record, by having a candid conversation about the racist legacy of Woodrow Wilson. And racism was not his only sin. The Wilson administration prosecuted and jailed many antiwar activists for sedition, including Socialist Party presidential candidate Eugene Debs for having made an antiwar speech.  (Debs was later pardoned by Republican President Warren Harding.)

No doubt there are others whose names should also be expunged. But because of his record of official racism and betrayal, Wilson’s name should be first on any such list. Those who oppose its removal from government buildings should explain exactly why whatever principle of tolerance they apply to so extreme a purveyor of racist policies as Wilson should not be applied equally to memorials to other historical figures as well.