Remove The John A. MacDonald Statue - Charlottetown

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Global Movement & Response

Charlottetown, Epekwitk (PEI) - In response to a global awakening to the complex history of colonialism, statues that celebrate and memorialize colonial politicians and "history makers" in North America are being toppled, removed or relocated. The original intent of these statues is to pay homage to leaders who have contributed in some way to the development of our national history.

However, as our understanding of history deepens, so too does our understanding of the historical narrative we have been taught. Colonial history is not the whole story; it has been whitewashed, it favours the deeds of white men, it favours select deeds of white men, and it erases the unfavourable deeds of these white men. Canada was built upon a cultural genocide of the original Indigenous inhabitants of Turtle Island.

Canadian Context & History

One of these men, Sir John A. MacDonald, is a dominant figure of Canadian Confederation who embodies the complexities of how we remember and celebrate history. We know that he was the first Prime Minister of Canada, with a successful political and military career, and established what is now known as the RCMP. Yet, were you aware that Sir John A MacDonald personally set in motion all of the most damaging elements of Canadian Indigenous policy by:

  • Establishing the North West Mounted Police (NWMP) contemporarily known as the RCMP to control the Indigenous population under the guise of "maintaining law & order".
  • Instituting the Indian Residential School system.
  • Creating the Indian Acta piece of legislation that was designed to extinguish Aboriginal titles and assimilate the Indigenous population into Canadian society. 
  • Implementing the starvation policy, deliberately starving thousands of Aboriginal people to clear a path for the Canadian Pacific Railroad and open the prairies to white settlement.

These are only some examples.

Solution

We demand that the Charlottetown City Council act in the spirit of truth and reconciliation by removing and relocating the statue of Sir John A. MacDonald to a location better designed to encourage conversation about all aspects of Canada's complex racial history.

We demand that Charlottetown City Council actively participate in decolonization by reviewing it's bylaws, policies and procedures with an inclusive and racially-focused lens, and produce a report on how it will actively acknowledge Indigenous history and contribute to reconciliation in Charlottetown.

#IndigenousLivesMatter

#RodneyLevi

#ChantelMoore


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