Whilst we should never forget our past, no one should have to look at a statue of such a brutal, murderous racist. For Britain to move forward, these relics of a bygone era, should not be merely moved, but destroyed.
Croydon is a rich, multicultural community, so why do we have an old, racist, bigoted, white man looking down on us?
Whatever you opinions on him being a "war hero", he led atrocities in Ireland, Kenya, and India which still have lasting repercussions today. He is a controversial figure who was openly bigoted and racist.
The "Black and Tans" were sent to Ireland by Churchill to repress Irish republicans. They committed many war crimes in Ireland in the 1920's including burning of homes and businesses, attacking civilians, and shooting and killing spectators at a Gaelic football match at Croke Park.
As the British Empire was in decline, Churchill actively fought to maintain British power over the colonies. He approved brutal and violent tactics for the suppression of the Mau Mau Rebellion in Kenya by the British Colonial Administration.
He advocated for the use of ‘poisoned gas’ against Kurdish people rebelling against British Rule, stating: "I am strongly in favour of using poisoned gas against uncivilised tribes".
He completely neglected the Indian famine of 1943, in which 3 million Indians died. Churchill opted to ignore India's pleas for Britain to cease exporting rice and claimed that the Indians "breed like rabbits". He stated that "Gandhi-ism and everything it stands for will have to be grappled with and crushed".
He described the "Red Indians of America and the Black people of Australia" as a weaker race.
With the Black Lives Matter movement gaining momentum, I think removing this mural and replacing it with something reflective of Croydon would be an important demonstration of solidarity. Churchill wouldn't like our community. He wouldn't be proud of the Croydon we know and love today so I don't see why he gets to be here when we could surely replace him with a mural of someone less divisive or more appropriate for the Croydon community.