I am for change and against any kind of discrimination, but for a peaceful change guided by love, justice, and reason. I am not against a new and better order of justice and unity, but I am against the way some people try to achieve it. The question has been debated for several days as statues of controversial historical figures are removed by demonstrators in the United States or the United Kingdom, in particular those of Christopher Columbus. Its obsessive desire to de-Christianize France led to chaos and anarchy that proved fatal; while it remained a tragic event followed by more destruction brought by Napoleon Bonaparte, only some of its noble ideals have remained alive in the hearts of people today. The injustice of the past—ancient, medieval, and modern history—has been updated to the current social and political conditions of society. But tearing down the statues is a start. Indeed, it is unfortunate that most people even do not care about them. Even headless, it still stirs curiosity and debate among passers-by. A statue is just a historical artifact and nothing more. Since the statues and properties are not intrinsically bad, we do not remove and destroy them. Hundreds of years of history collide with raw, contemporary emotions in each of these statues. We are, with our successes and failures, its products, and heirs—those who refuse to see that refuse to deal with their own failures and errors. Since the statues and properties are not intrinsically bad, we do not remove and destroy them. However, this lesson of history only reminded me something that I had already known: people, regardless of their color and social status and power, are self-centered and ready to change themselves according to the direction of the wind. Why do we not do that is a question that exposes each one of us. Why vandalism would work this time, I do not understand? Since we do not remove our parents, despite their weaknesses and errors, we do NOT remove a tradition that has given us meaning and life. In a highly significant intervention, business minister Nadhim Zahawi said statues should be removed after a memorial of slaver Edward Colston was dragged down in protests in Bristol. However, when a group of people is hurt enough by any given monument to protest for its removal, rather than attempt to debate the merits of the historical figure, we should remove the damned statue. He is a historian and theologian who teaches in the Department of Religious Studies and Theology of Saint Xavier University in Chicago, Illinois. We covered all the statues of former slave owners who are represented before the National Assembly with black sheets," recalls Sandra. ", Anticolonialism: two new statues debunked in Martinique. The removal of statues leads us to think of radical changes. But that would be a very selective and biased act since most history is tainted with injustice and discrimination. Ideally, the society must be changed according to the image of God’s kingdom, but the Christian realizes that he/she cannot rely on it because its values are opposed to God’s principles and values. Gavril Andreicut Ph.D. is a Romanian recently naturalized in the U.S. And in France ? If we start taking statues down, well, we better go for old Thomas Jefferson (master of a slave who was his mistress and mother of at least four of his children). Before changing our community and society, we must remove the infirmities and the inordinate desires of the soul. In Nov. 2018, Los Angeles became the next city to take a side in this debate. Big statues in prominent public spaces erected to make a point about the supposed glories of the Confederacy should be … ", It is rather this second option that seemed to be favored by Frédéric Potier, interministerial delegate for the fight against racism, anti-Semitism and anti-LGBT hatred (Dilcrah), guest of Europe 1 on Saturday. For example, the first president of the United States, George Washington, refused to include black people in his army. YES! By changing our immediate environments, we would gradually change America. Also, send me the Politics Red Newsletter. Just over a month later, the city of Los Angeles decided it was time to remove … John Chrysostom’s sermons and Libanius’s speech about the removal of pagan statues by monks in the fourth century tells us about the fall of the ancient world and the beginning of a new society, that is, the “Christian society.” And the French Revolution, with its radical opposition to tradition, tells us about the beginning of a new worldview that, in the name of justice, destroyed everything that had seemed suspicious and perceived as an opposition. If we deal with negative cases, we critique and expose them, learn from them, and try not to repeat the mistakes of the past. Each system—e.g., political, social, religious—have tried to convince people of its good intentions of unity and justice, but no one has been able to create a society animated by justice? Although largely celebrated in elementary and middle school classrooms across America, Columbus is a symbol of colonization and terror, and for this reason, many feel statues glorifying his legacy should be removed. I am sure that among those who express their discontent through acts of vandalism and violence are many Christians. We … This is not a subject for the elected officials. Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. Which statues of historical figures should we remove? The “gold” and bravery of history is almost always mixed with questionable acts morally. Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Is it another cosmetical change, one that gives people the impression of change? If we should not remove monuments to perpetrators of evil for fear that it might lead to the removal ... think should be honored. How the use of violence and hatred will usher society into a new era pf justice is very unclear to me. Does it mean that we remove whatever we do not like from history because of its questionable character? If not, the next step would be the removal of anything we do not like from history and Western civilization. For Mr. Shapiro, the issue at hand has nothing to do with Confederate monuments. Thus, logic would dictate we remove statues of Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, and all other slave-owning political leaders. We must try to change our society into a better one, but we do NOT remove it; as already mentioned, it confronts us by reminding us of who we really are. This is not a reason to remove or obscure them. The House of Representatives Wednesday passed bipartisan legislation to remove confederate statues from the U.S. Capitol, arguing that the memorials to … Does it mean that we should remove George Washington from history? Its obsessive desire to de-Christianize France led to chaos and anarchy that proved fatal; while it remained a tragic event followed by more destruction brought by Napoleon Bonaparte, only some of its noble ideals have remained alive in the hearts of people today. Shifting images and changing flags, controversy continues, US prestigious university decides to remove President Wilson's name in “racism”, Anti-colonialism: "Instead of debunking, let's name the streets!" But people are supposed to learn from statues and from the past in general. Removing statues means we will never again know our history. Both actions are part of a national debate over who should be honored with school and street names and statues. (Alec MacGillis/ProPublica via REUTERS) U.S. President Donald Trump hit back on Thursday at critics of his response to racial violence in the Virginia city of … Should we expect another form of domination? ... We should … In Martinique, these statues have long been criticized and actions have been taken against them. Why We Should Keep The Confederate Monuments Right Where They Are Tearing down Confederate statues, or any monuments from our history, will … Should we remove all statues of FDR? - I mean, internment camps were pretty racist. I have serious doubts that any desire and/or movement of change that relies on violence and hatred can bring substantial changes in justice and peace. "In 2006, I was part of the Devoirs de Mémoires collective. These events—and many others—brought changes, but they were not substantial changes: they changed the existent forms of injustice with other forms of injustice, they did not remove it. The removal of statues tells us about ourselves, about our hatred and undomesticated impulses, and about our inability to enact change without causing anarchy and discontent. They teach us, and it depends on us whether we practice what we learn. 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