Remove the Captain Cook Statue in Anchorage, AK

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The Captain Cook statue represents a colonial story. It is one that is both local and global, and inextricable with the experiences of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color). Cook represents the cultural violence of racism, genocide, and loss of land and history.

In the sum of his actions and experiences, the statue idolizes Cook who was a murderer and rapist. His conquest left a wake of terror amongst Indigenous people around the world. To allow his statue to remain is to support a narrative that erases Indigenous people from their history. Furthermore, it glorifies slavery and genocide above respect for Alaskans who continue to live on these lands.

Anchorage is Dena’ina land. The Dena’ina people have stewarded this place for thousands of years, and they continue to do so today. The removal of the Captain Cook statue is a moment of truth-telling in which we can acknowledge that this true history is one that tells the story of the people who have always been here, the Dena’ina people.

Currently, the Captain Cook statue is situated across from the Alaska Victims of Violent Crime Memorial. In a time of public outcry for justice, what does this communicate to the Black community experiencing systemic violence due to the colonial histories Cook perpetuated? Together, we demand the removal of the Captain Cook statue as an act of reparations towards Indigenous and Black people, past and present, as well as an act of solidarity towards the community.

This petition is to set in motion the discussions we need to have in order to remove the Captain Cook statue. We need to hold space for dialogues that address relationship building, open communication, and healing. These ideas are living and so is this narrative--it will change and it will grow. We hope that the removal of this statue is a continuation of this long process towards healing, Indigenous self-determination, and Black reparations.