Letters to the Editor

Should we sanitise history?

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

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Dear Editor,

In light of the recent gruesome murder of a beautiful young woman in Charlottesville, Virginia, recently by those extremists, including possibly members of the Ku Klux Klan and Neo-Nazis, I have decided to take this argument to the local landscape based on our culture.

President Donald Trump asked recently: “This week it is Robert E Lee, and this week Stonewall Jackson. Is it George Washington next week, and is it Thomas Jefferson the week after? You have to ask yourself, where does it stop?” To be frank, that slippery slope argument had me thinking.

Should we repeal the buggery law, because it was written by our slavers?

Should we remove monuments of our slave owners?

Should we leave Christianity because it was taught to us by slave owners?

Should we stop playing some sports because they were created by slave owners?

Should we destroy some books because they were written by slave owners?

Should we remove Bob Marley monuments because he was against homosexuals, pro-marijuana, a 'gyallis'?

Should we remove monuments of our hero, Marcus Garvey, because he talked about upliftment of our black race?

Should we demolish the Rose Hall Great House?

Why are monuments of criminals like Henry Morgan and Christopher Columbus still being celebrated here in Jamaica?

History ain't all good, so if you all want to paint history as good and nothing bad that's called sanitising history. But we have got to remember that the next generation will never know their past because we decided to 'clean up' history.

Whenever a society cleans history, it will always make the same mistakes again.

In no way am I here defending the Confederate General Robert E Lee, but the question is, shouldn't the US have a debate, instead of people tearing down statues? What about putting them in museums?

General Robert E Lee who was charged for treason and the killing of citizens. According to a news report done on August 13, 2017, entitled ' AP Explains: How Robert E Lee went from hero to racist icon', in an 1856 letter, Lee wrote that slavery is “a moral and political evil”. But Lee also wrote in the same letter that God would be the one responsible for emancipation and blacks were better off in the US than Africa. So reads the history. At least it has not been sanitised.

Teddylee Gray

Ocho Rios, St Ann





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