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How do we think about taking down controversial statues in the UK?
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The controversial statues represent UK history inaccurately

Statues misrepresent the past, and are dangerous because of this.

The Argument

Individuals have every right to remove historical statues as said statues represent history inaccurately and ineffectively. Statues and other commemorative forms representing individuals are often created in honoring, supporting, or reflecting a legacy. However, if this representation does not include a comprehensive look and understanding of that individual, it is misrepresented. Statues are fundamentally public, and so by not conveying the full story the public is being misinformed.[1] Therefore, the public is within their right to remove misinformation from the public sphere. For example, in the case of the now infamous statue of Edward Colston in Bristol, his full history was not successfully conveyed by his statue. Colston undoubtedly brought great wealth and renown to Bristol through his work as a merchant, philanthropist, and Member of Parliament. These contributions to society appear to have merited his celebration in the city. However, by not detailing his extensive involvement in the Atlantic slave trade and active support for black human suffering, the statue becomes involved in misinformation.[2] The city of Bristol attempted to remedy this with additional plaques, but one cannot rebuild public memory and awareness, prompting the need for its removal.

Counter arguments

To remove the statues entirely also represents history inaccurately. By removing celebratory statues and markers, and pretending they were never erected in the first place, protestors are attempting to rewrite rather than reroute historical narrative. Such action can become dangerous in the future, as the possibility to remove anything displeasing in history may result in vast historical inaccuracies. [3]



Rejecting the premises


This page was last edited on Tuesday, 22 Sep 2020 at 09:17 UTC

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