Nov 29, 2021

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A battle of idols took place on Wall Street when a seven-foot-tall bronze statue of a gorilla appeared, facing off against the iconic bronze Charging Bull statue that has come to symbolize the investing district. One rabbi noted that this publicity stunt symbolized the new era of idolatry that is taking over the “woke culture.”


Harambe versus the Charging Bull of Wall Street

The gorilla statue was erected by Ankit Bhatia, Tejay Alur, and Robert Giometti, the founders of Sapien.Network,  a social networking platform “dedicated to putting the needs and welfare of human beings first,” also piled 10,000 bananas around the base of the Charging Bull statue, making it look as if the symbol of Wall Street investing was protecting his stash of fruit from the newcomer. 

Bhatia and Giometti told the media that their installation was intended to convey the message that Wall Street has ”gone bananas.”

“We acknowledge the banana as a trust-building mechanism,” said Aluru. “There’s a distinct lack of trust and empathy in the world. We wanted to go back to the simple roots and giving a banana is powerful.” 

“It’s also about respecting nature’s limits,” said Giometti. “Bananas rot and you can’t have infinite bananas. Some people tend to think that you can have infinite growth and have infinite money, but that’s not how the world works.”

“Harambe is a representation of something that lets us look at more than just ourselves. What are we aspiring to as people?” he explained. “It’s about connecting. A simple gesture of giving a banana builds community. As a society, we need to come together. We can’t keep fighting to come together.”

Harambe??!! Really??!!

The statue was in the image of Harambe, a 440-pound Silverback Gorilla at the Cincinnati Zoo who was killed in 2016 when a three-year-old boy climbed into the gorilla’s enclosure where he was grabbed and dragged aggressively. 

“Though the gorilla never acted aggressively toward the child, Harambe was shot by zookeepers who were fearful for the child’s safety,” the Sapien.Network explained in a news release. 

It should be noted that after the widely publicized killing of the gorilla, many in the general public criticized the use of lethal force to save the child. . A number of primatologists and conservationists wrote later that the zoo had no other choice under the circumstances.

“For Bhatia and Giometti, the bronze statue of Harambe, contrasted with the bronze Charging Bull of Wall Street, represents the millions of everyday people who struggle under a system that enriches wealthy elites and leaves the average person behind,” the news release continued.

Abram smashing idols

The two statues aggressively confronting each other is reminiscent of the midrash describing a young Abraham working in the idol shop of his father Terah. One day, Terah went away, leaving Abraham, still named Abram at the time, in charge of the shop. After confronting several people who came to purchase an idol with the flaws in their idolatrous beliefs, Abraham smashed all the idols, placing the hammer in the hand of the one remaining idol which was the largest in the shop. Abraham also placed a piece of meat in the lap of the idol. When his father returned, angry at the destruction of his wares, Abram blamed it on the idol, claiming that the “gods” had argued over the meat. His father responded by saying that they are only statues and were incapable of such actions. Abram pointed out the hypocrisy of worshipping inanimate idols. 

Rabbi Chananya Weissmann, who blogs under the title of End the Madness emphasized that idols, are forbidden but the Bible in any form, is becoming a new age trend of the ‘woke’ culture..

“Any time you believe that there is another source other than God to heal or mend, that is idolatry,” Rabbi Weissmann said. “The actual statue is just a symptom, not the actual disease.”

“These people have a warped concept of the value of human life, Rabbi Weismann said. “They figure that there are far more little boys than gorillas so it is preferable to them that the boy dies and the gorilla lives. But that is characteristic of idolatry which is a death cult and offers up children and babies to Moloch in its worship of nature as the ultimate god.”

“This is also expressed in the pandemic mandates which call for vaccinating younger people who are not at risk. It also puts masks on children, treating them like plague-ridden pariahs. They are condemning the children to a lifetime of booster shots rather than start at the age when people really start to be in danger.”

“It is not a coincidence that the very same people who deny creation and prefer to believe that they descended from monkies want to erect an idol to a gorilla. They are getting back to what they believe are their roots.”

“They reject faith in favor of what they call science. They prohibit prayer yet create legislation that permits bars and nightclubs to stay open. It is precisely prayer that is the source of healing and our connection with the source of all life.”

New era of idols

The Charging Bull of Wall Street was erected on Broadway just north of Bowling Green is a popular tourist attraction symbolizing aggressive financial optimism and prosperity. The sculpture was created by Italian artist Arturo Di Modica in the wake of the 1987 Black Monday stock market crash. Two years later, Di Modica arrived on Wall Street with the 11-foot tall, 7,100-pound Charging Bull on the back of a truck and illegally dropped the sculpture outside of the New York Stock Exchange Building. After being removed by the police later that day, Charging Bull was installed at Bowling Green on December 20, 1989. A temporary permit for the statue to stand at the site was issued  

The Charging Bull has come to symbolize the stock exchange and, as such, has been targeted by critics of capitalism, as was witnessed during the Occupy Wall Street protests of 2011. The statue has been the frequent target of vandalism. 

Some critics of the statue have compared it to the Golden Calf worshipped by the Israelites after they left Egypt. 

In 2017, the bronze statue titled Fearless Girl was installed facing off against the Charging Bull. Installed in anticipation of International Women’s Day. The four-foot-tall bronze Fearless Girl symbolized the defiant stance of gender-diverse companies that have a relatively high percentage of women among their senior leadership. One year later, the Fearless Girl backed down from challenging the Charging Bull and was relocated to outside the New York Stock Exchange. A plaque with footprints was placed on the original site of Fearless Girl. 

It certainly seems that “woke culture” is obsessed with idols. While tearing down statues of historical figures, most recently a 188-year-old statue of Thomas Jefferson that was removed this week from its place in front of New York City Hall, new statues are popping up just as fast. 

A bronze statue of George Floyd was vandalized twice. In June, the six-foot-tall 700-pound bronze bust was installed outside Newark, New Jersey’s City Hall. Days later, the face of the statue was painted black, with the name of a neo-Nazi group painted on its torso. Security footage shows a man holding a skateboard and mixing paint behind the sculpture before getting on his skateboard, splattering it across the face of the statue, and riding away.

Two other statues by the same artist, Chris Carnabuci, were recently erected in Union Square. One represents US Congressman and civil rights champion John Lewis (Dem-Georgia) who passed away last year.

The other statue displayed in Union Square is of Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old black woman who was fatally shot in her Louisville, Kentucky, apartment during a no-knock raid after her boyfriend shot at the police, wounding one. The shooting of Taylor by police officers led to numerous protests that added to those across the United States against police brutality and racism. When a grand jury did not indict the officers for her death, further civil unrest ensued.

In December 2020, a ceramic bust of Taylor that was installed near City Hall in downtown Oakland, California, was smashed, apparently with a baseball bat. The statue stood on a pedestal bearing the words, “Say Her Name, Breonna Taylor”.

At the beginning of the month, the statue was moved to Union Square, New York City. Two days later, gray paint was thrown across the statue.

“This is a war of ideologies,” Rabbi Weissmann said. They have to put up new symbols to replace the old symbols.”

The war is actually more than a war of symbols or words. Floyd’s death while being arrested by police in Minneapolis in May 2020 led to protests intermingled with riots around the world. The riots caused $1–2 billion in insured damages nationally—the highest recorded damage from civil disorder in U.S. history. 

“I can guarantee that all the people who put up these statues, while claiming to care about social justice, are wealthy and live far away from the needy and oppressed,” Rabbi Weissman said. “That is why they buy expensive statues that do nothing to address the real problems of the inner city and poor. It is a method of mind control.”

“The symbolism in this case of Harambe is not that they want to raise up the poor or distribute ‘bananas’. The symbolism is that they want to beat wall street and take all their bananas for themselves.”

This is what these people are about. Jews and people of faith, in times of danger, give to each other,” Rabbi Weissmann said.