New Mexico Republicans want to be the ones who knock ... down some controversial new statues.
Conservatives in the state are criticizing two statues that were recently erected at the Albuquerque Convention Center in New Mexico dedicated to Walter White and Jesse Pinkman, the meth dealer characters played by Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul in Breaking Bad, per Variety. The show, which revolves around a chemistry teacher who teams up with his former student to cook crystal meth and build a drug empire, is set in New Mexico and was filmed there.
"I'm glad New Mexico got the business, but really? We're going down the road of literally glorifying meth makers?" Republican State Rep. Rod Montoya told Fox News. Conservative talk radio host and former mayoral candidate Eddy Aragon also criticized the decision, especially in light of a statue of Spanish conquistador Juan de Oñate being removed in Albuquerque.
"So it's OK to go get rid of real historical figures and now, somehow it's even better, to [have] fictional, drug-dealing figures," Aragon told Fox, adding, "It's not the type of recognition we want for the city of Albuquerque, or for our state."
Albuquerque mayor Tim Keller argued the "positive impact that the cast and crew of Breaking Bad have had on our economy and film industry can't be minimized." But during an event unveiling them, Breaking Bad creator Vince Gilligan acknowledged that some people would see these statues dedicated to "two fictional infamous meth dealers" and say, "Wow, just what our city needed."