NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The Christopher Columbus Preservation Coalition held a rally Saturday across from the Columbus statue on 59th Street, demanding the mayor’s commission to review controversial monuments be disbanded.

The commission held its first public hearing Friday and has four more scheduled over the next two weeks, including one Tuesday in Brooklyn and another Wednesday in Manhattan.

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The coalition refuses to testify and sent a letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio, saying the hearings are contributing to divisiveness in the city.

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“The hearings will be a lightning rod for hatred and acrimony and will serve no useful purpose,” one member read. “The existence of your monument commission has exacerbated ill will and abled those who would deface monuments.”

The coalition wants to statue on 59th Street to stay and not be changed in any way.

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Columbus has been criticized for his treatment of indigenous people.