England didn't erect statues of Hitler, Hess or Goebbels

Friday , September 08, 2017 - 7:00 AM4 comments

I share some of the thoughts put forward by D. Louise Brown, as published in the Standard-Examiner on Thursday, Aug. 31 (“America shouldn’t be in the business of taking down statues”). Some I do not share.

I too believe that statuary is a powerful lesson in history, positive and negative. It is a long sweep, however to suggest the House of Commons and the Victoria and Albert Museum be used to make your case, or rather ought be used.

To connect statues of Robert E. Lee or Andrew Jackson to these two venerable memorials they would need to include statues of Adolf Hitler, Rudolf Hess or Joseph Goebbels.

For a history lesson on the period of human enslavement, the more applicable statuary would be a mother turning her daughter over to the auctioneer, or a slave, who had hoped to gain his own freedom by flight, being branded with hot irons when he was returned (per the laws regarding slavery).

For a more recent lesson, erect a statue of high school students being dispersed with water hoses and attack dogs. Or of Medgar Evers, mortally wounded in his driveway.

We do need the history lessons. We all need them. Let us balance the lessons with appropriate examples.

Ked Kirkham


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