Keep the name Gladstone's Library, his statue & namesakes in Hawarden: Our valued history.

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Delilah Jones
Delilah Jones signed this petition

Many people of Hawarden & surrounding areas and all of those who respect William Gladstone's place in British history, would like to keep Gladstone's Library, the statue and other Gladstone namesakes, in tact, as they are.  They form an important part of our local and national history.

 We do not condone any form or racism or discrimination towards anyone, however, we believe that eradicating someone with links to aspects of our pasts that we'd rather forget is counter-productive.  William Gladstone spent most of his career fighting for the rights of others as much as could be expected at his time. Despite his initial political stance (the environment he grew up in )...he changed our standards he held wrong views as a young man and matured and developed his moral values and character and did much good for many people.This is a great example to us all.  He was the only British Prime Minister to serve for four different periods of time.  He deserves to be remembered.  If the name Gladstone is removed then we lose our local and national heritage.

The library houses William Gladstone’s book collection and his personal papers; the name reflects what they offer. But it is more than that, as an institution they uphold and support what William Gladstone stood for – his liberal attitudes, his dedication to human rights, his commitment to democracy, his tolerance of other beliefs. William Gladstone unambiguously expressed his belief that slavery was “the foulest crime that taints the history of mankind.”

"Gladstone was perhaps the greatest British politician of the 19th century. To him above all others goes the credit for creating a political system and state structure that aimed to function beyond the reach of vested interests, particularly those of the upper classes in British society." Encyclopedia Britannica

Gladstone said that all "human beings in the same flesh and blood, [are] bound by the law of mutual love; that that mutual love is not limited by the shores of this island, is not limited by the boundaries of Christian civilisation; that it passes over the whole surface of the earth, and embraces the meanest along with the greatest in its unmeasured scope.” a foreign-policy speech in 1879 (the “Midlothian campaign”), These words are still resonant today,  for justice for all, at home and throughout the world. 

Please sign this if like me you deplore racism and discrimination in all it's forms, but at the same time value the positive aspects of our history.   We can remember William Gladstone and teach our children about how much good he achieved and also about the negative aspects of his family's past which need to be remembered as well.

There are many people suffering in the world today for our wealth.  Those who really have a strong interest in human rights and ending slavery and poverty for others, instead of focusing on history, could focus on the here and now ...for example where their food and clothing is coming from and who makes the products we buy.  Modern day slavery in all it's forms needs to be abolished, not our valid local and national history demolished.