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Your letters for July 7, 2020 – Regina Leader-Post

by ahnationtalk on July 7, 202031 Views

History is far more complex than usually acknowledged and in the spirit of reconciliation, it is essential to listen to other voices telling their stories to get a more complete picture of the past. Many conversations will make us uncomfortable.

Supporters say Sir John was a true father of Canada. Without him there may have been no railway, and without that we could all be Americans today. The presence of his statue tells us something about our past. But, others say, his government started residential schools, leaving a legacy of many social ills and his statue disrespects the suffering of many thousands of First Nations people.

I wonder what the absence of his statue would tell us about our history? Can four sentences on a plaque say what we need to know about this complicated bit of Canada’s story? Europeans believed they were given dominion over the earth and the Prairies had to be cleared of Indigenous inhabitants so settlers, and profits, could multiply. The sad reality is we are still plagued by the legacy of destructive environmental policies and exploitative capitalism. Will the presence, or absence, of Sir John’s statue help us deal with these existential issues?

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