A statue of William Penn, the English Quaker credited with the founding of the Province of Pennsylvania, will remain in Philadelphia’s Welcome Park after all, a victory for common sense and a reminder of the positive power and influence of grassroots activism.

The whole fiasco began when National Park Service officials announced plans to renovate the area, bowing to pressure from indigenous representatives requesting an “expanded interpretation of the Native American history of Philadelphia.”

Welcome Park dates to 1982, the 300th anniversary of Penn’s historic founding of the territory. That land was actually given to the Penn family from King Charles II to settle a debt.

City officials have long recognized the significance of the actual plot in question on which the suddenly controversial statue has been standing for forty years. As leader of the colony, William Penn lived and worked on that spot, both writing the laws for the territory and “Charter of Privileges” which codified religious freedom for the area residents.

To be sure, William Penn was a stout and unapologetic believer in Jesus Christ. He once famously declared, “No pain, no palm; no thorns, no throne; no gall, no glory; no cross, no crown.”

Which is why progressives in the area were eager to remove his statue and try and erase any memory of what was behind the colony’s founding.

Initial plans from the Park Service suggested the renovations, including the removal of the Penn statue, would result in “a more welcoming, accurate, and inclusive experience for visitors.”

A strong contingent of citizens said otherwise.

Blitzed with intense opposition, officials reversed course declaring they had “withdrawn the review of a draft proposal to rehabilitate Welcome Park and closed the public comment period.”

They continued:

“The preliminary draft proposal, which was released prematurely and had not been subject to a complete internal agency review, is being retracted.  No changes to the William Penn statue are planned.”

This is what happens when patriotic and faith-filled Americans with conviction band together and speak up and speak out.

The late Senator Tom Coburn once said, “All change starts with a distant rumble at the grassroots level.”

Interestingly enough, representatives from various political ideologies are expressing their approval with some even claiming credit for the reversal.

It seems the woke agenda is increasingly unpopular and only embraced by fringe constituencies. This is why it’s critical Christian believers stand up to the bullies and refuse to back down. It might not always mean a silent majority exists to back you up, but principles are always a strong match for extremists.

Enough is enough with the statue and monument cleansing. When we attempt to erase or sanitize the past, we miss out on the many lessons that can be gleamed from the eventful, history-shaping, and imperfect lives lived before us. Not only that, but we set the bar impossibly high. By woke and hypocritical standards, only those who have an unblemished background are the ones that can be learned from and esteemed. They just don’t exist.

“Men must be governed by God or they will be ruled by tyrants,” said William Penn – a truth that has aged well in the three hundred years since the Quaker’s death.


Image from Getty.