Statue of Limitations


Convivium, 16 August 2017

Convivium editor-in-chief Father Raymond J. de Souza examines what the recent events in Charlottesville have taught us about the role of historical honour and remembrance.  

The ugliness and violence by racists in Charlottesville over the weekend brought to the fore an issue that is relevant also in Canada. How do we think about the honours given to historic figures, in the light of changed attitudes today?

On Tuesday, President Donald Trump, who never pours oil upon the waters if there is a fire to which he might bring gasoline, increased the rhetorical temperature by asking what ought to be done about the monuments for George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.

If the issue at hand in Charlottesville was the city council’s decision to remove the statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee from a city park, what would that mean for Washington and Jefferson, Trump asked?

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