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Of Names and Statues

Tue, August 29, 2017   |   Author: Rod Taylor   |   Volume 24    Issue 35   

Since Charlottesville, the ultra-left activists in both the US and Canada have gone on a binge of tearing down statues (or demanding that they be torn down), and renaming schools, streets, and buildings that currently bear the names of historical figures they don’t like. This along with elevating causes and personalities with which their world views are more closely aligned. The central figure, which these activists and their mainstream media propagandists really hope to topple, is of course, US President Donald Trump. Along the way and to facilitate this end, they are busy practising on lesser targets who can’t fight back, such as General Robert E. Lee, Christopher Columbus, and in Canada now, Sir John A. Macdonald. For those who haven’t heard, the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario has called for the renaming of any schools bearing the name of our first Prime Minister and one of our fathers of Confederation.

The reasons being given for this madness is that these men are flawed. Whatever their accomplishments such as, in Sir John A. Macdonald’s case, the formation of Canada and the creation of Canada’s first transnational railway, these people manifested serious flaws in either their character or actions. Guess what? Humankind is flawed. Sir John A. Macdonald had a drinking problem. He also made a huge mistake in not recognizing and engaging First Nations leaders in the process of Confederation. His administration set the stage for the pain, shame and failure of the residential schools. His failure in that regard is still troubling us today. Call it cultural insensitivity. Call it racism. Call it greed, pragmatism or pride. Call it sin. No, he was not perfect. As significant as those lapses were, they don’t erase the fact that he and other leaders of his time pushed through major obstacles to create the nation of Canada, deemed by many of us today to be among the best places in the world to live. Thanks to their efforts, we live now in a prosperous democracy, in a land of opportunity for people of all races and ethnic backgrounds. We are still struggling. We still have flawed leaders with mixed motives.

History is littered with the flawed legacies of its movers and shakers. Also with the scattered bones and damaged lives of their contemporaries and their descendants. You see t-shirts on college campuses with the image of Che Guevara, one of the Cuban revolutionaries who removed one dictator to set up another, Fidel Castro. Men died during and after the revolution there and countless Cubans were tortured and perished in Cuba’s political prisons. Yet people display his image as if he were a saint. The combined legacies of Marx, Stalin, Lenin, Mao Tse-tung and Pol Pot include the brutal torture, starvation, and execution of well over 100 million human beings. Still, many exalt them as “liberators of mankind.” Planned Parenthood’s founder, Margaret Sanger was not only a baby-killer with her cold, clinical, calculated eugenics policies but an absolute racist who sought to reduce the black population; yet her name continues to be lifted up by her pro-abort followers today.

US President John F. Kennedy was a war hero, a champion of civil rights, and the celebrated defender of the West during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Yet it is common knowledge that he was also a philanderer, an adulterer. President Bill Clinton brought shame to the White House for his adulteries and false testimony. He reinstated partial birth abortion in the US. None of that erases the fact that he was the 42nd President of the United States. Left-wingers still pay him a million bucks to speak to them. Where is their “cultural sensitivity” and “moral outrage” over his sinful indiscretions?

We are a flawed people. Even those who want to do what’s right often fail. Even biblical figures like King David, Solomon, and Moses had epic failures, moments of selfishness, pride, anger or doubt. The Apostle Peter famously denied the Lord. We don’t condone these sins in others nor justify them in ourselves. We only want to point out the hypocrisy of tearing down the statues of flawed historical figures and replacing them with statues of other flawed historical figures.

Through all of human history until now, there has only been One man who was without sin. Only One who was worthy of worship: Jesus Christ, King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He needs no statue and no monument because He is not dead but alive! Before Him one day every knee shall bow. There is no need to make excuses for his actions because he never failed. He stands alone in history as the perfect man, the Creator of the world and the Saviour of humankind. All others, including presidents, prime ministers, and kings are mere bit players in the story of human existence.

We ought not to whitewash history nor the men and women who made it. We need to recognize their service, acknowledge their flaws and apply ourselves to learn from their mistakes. Human beings have shortcomings, limitations, and blind spots. We need to ask wisdom from the only One who has no sin; from the One who wants to guide us and establish His nature—first in us and then through us.

The Christian Heritage Party seeks to apply biblical principles of justice, equality, and respect for life, family and freedom. We make no claim to be flawless, either as individuals or even as a party. We serve the One who is flawless and ask Him to help us represent Him better as He works in us to “will and do of His good pleasure.” All those who wish to see our nation more closely aligned with those principles are welcome to join us in the effort to bring God’s love to a hurting nation.

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