After being scratched and punched, Trump wax figure is removed
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After being scratched and punched, Trump wax figure is removed
An undated photo provided by Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, a wax figure of former President Donald Trump at Louis Tussaud’s Waxworks in San Antonio, Texas. The figure was so badly battered that it required repairs and was removed. Ripley's Believe It or Not! via The New York Times.

by Jesus Jiménez

NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- When he was in office, Donald Trump often complained that he felt battered and under assault, but that did not compare with the physical beating a wax statue of the former president recently endured at a Texas attraction.

The figure of Trump at Louis Tussaud’s Palace of Wax in San Antonio had been punched and scratched so much lately that it was removed from display for repairs this week.

The assault was not the first time a wax likeness of a president or celebrity had been marred, highlighting a history of such cases extending back decades.

Wax statues of politicians, including former presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush, have been temporarily removed from display after being damaged or vandalized, said Suzanne Smagala-Potts, a spokesperson for Ripley Entertainment, the company that operates the San Antonio location and a number of other wax and oddity attractions across the country.

“Sometimes it’s intentional; sometimes it’s not,” Smagala-Potts said. “Oftentimes, some people may feel more strongly toward a political figure than a celebrity.”

A wax figure of Adolf Hitler was beheaded in 2008 by a protester at a Madame Tussauds museum in Berlin. After it was repaired, the figure was returned to the museum behind glass windows and with two guards to protect it. Madame Tussauds and Louis Tussaud’s share similar names but are run by different companies.

Smagala-Potts said she did not know if the San Antonio site would post guards near Trump’s wax figure after it is repaired.

Assaults on the wax figure of Trump became more frequent around last year's election. Even after the statue was moved to the lobby — where attendants could see it — the jabs and scratches did not stop, according to the San Antonio Express-News, which reported on the removal of the figure.

Trump’s figure was on display in a city that voted decidedly blue in the last election, in a state that stands out as a Republican stronghold.

The figure, which sported the former president’s signature red tie and cuff links, was part of a rotating display at the museum, Smagala-Potts said. A wax figure of President Joe Biden is in the works.

© 2021 The New York Times Company

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