History catches up with Komagata Maru villain — and it’s good riddance

In general, oppose taking down statues and monuments, and prefer interpretative plaques and panels that educate and inform:

In recent years, various Canadian government bodies and institutions have “unerected” monuments and renamed buildings commemorating historical figures who contributed to the cultural genocide of Canada’s Indigenous Peoples.

John A. Macdonald, Hector-Louis Langevin, Edward Cornwallis, Joseph Trutch and Matthew Begbie — men who were proponents of odious anti-Indigenous institutions such as the residential school system — have all had their names scrubbed off plaques or statues mothballed into permanent storage.

Clearly these “complex” individuals, or “men of their times,” merited a historical reputational downgrade and/or some form of legacy asterisking. Whether they deserve further amendment, or even censure, however, is problematic.

But if there is any Canadian figure who merits historical erasure — as nearly impossible as that is to defend, thanks to George Orwell — it’s the latest and fully deserving figure to be added to the list above: H.H. Stevens.

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

One Response to History catches up with Komagata Maru villain — and it’s good riddance

  1. hq@mirems.com says:

    Soooo… This is what a “Contributing columnist” gets to do? Blythe, keep in mind when talking to The Star. A

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