Don’t destroy public property for political reasons
Chief Ron Sam and Chief Rob Thomas, both of the Songhees nation, penned a letter (Times Colonist, June 15) in response to the recent vandalization of the statue of Queen Victoria. In it they stated that they did not support the defacement of the statue calling it an “act of aggression and insult…” They quite rightly recognized that they were not responsible for supportive of it, and that whoever wrote “Lekwungen” on it did not speak for them.
You have to wonder what is going on here. Who is it serving to vandalize and deface monuments of past Canadian political figures and who is responsible for it? From Chief Sam’s and Chief Thomas’ perspective certainly not them or their people. A small group of political extremists is responsible, motivated by their ideology and a personal sense of hatred and rage against anyone who represents, in any way, accepted beliefs, traditional Canadian history or a political viewpoint different from their own.
Let’s be clear. They have no right to speak for the Lekwungen or, for that matter, for the rest of us. I suspect that if anyone has wrongly appropriated the discontent of indigenous groups it is them, and that they are composed of people who are likely not indigenous, although that cannot be conclusively proven.
Finally, this is vandalism and the destruction of public property. Since when did Canadians start approving of that, and since when did it become possible to use vandalism to direct public policy as it now seems to be in several Canadian municipalities? Congratulations to Chief Sam and Chief Thomas for condemning the defacement of Queen Victoria’s statue. No one should speak for them, and no one should approve of the destruction of public property for political reasons.