Removing Macdonald statue not historical erasure

Many deem it as erasing history — but this is not the case.

Removing Macdonald statue not historical erasure

Removing Macdonald statue not historical erasure

There has been a growing tide of responses to the attempts to remove a statue of first Prime Minister John A. Macdonald from a Regina park, as well as from the names of several schools. Many deem it as erasing history — but this is not the case.

We can honor Macdonald’s accomplishments all we want — no one is saying we can’t. However, by having his name plastered across public buildings, and monuments dedicated to him, is not a positive thing. This glorifies him, and by moving the monument to a museum, you no longer glorify the abhorrent things he said and did. Instead, it becomes something that will be treated as a piece of history. Not as something to be admired.

This also applies to the confederate monuments in the U.S. that riots have recently broken out over. We aren’t erasing history by taking them down, we are simply acknowledging that some parts of history are dark, and they belong in a museum instead of on a pedestal.

As for Macdonald living in “another time”, this is correct, but racism was never right. To try and justify Macdonald’s actions by saying that he “lived in another time” is to spit on everyone whose rights he worked so hard to take away. Was slavery OK just because it occurred in a different time? No. Morality is not subjective; some things are simply wrong whether they occurred 100 years ago or yesterday.

Piper Cote

Cowichan Bay