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Charlottesville, USA.

Aug. 20, 2017

As if we needed any more evidence of the power of the civic statue, Charlottesville provides us with the sad proof.

The heritage of the confederacy's war on the human rights of a race of people they enslaved for their own enrichment is shameful. This is the patriarchy's most base and vile manifestation and has proved a rallying point for modern day racists, bigots and self-defined "nationalists".

.Image: Monumental cartoon from The Baltimore Sun by Kal

The difficult question that it leaves us with is how to stop honouring evil aspects of a nation's history without erasing it from the record? We know that if we do not understand our history we are condemned to repeat it, mistakes and all. Taking down statues to evil-doers expresses the abhorence we feel for their acts but we also need to remember what they have done.

Auschwitz could have been razed to the ground but then would we truly see the utter horror of what went on under the nazi regime? Some commemeration seems to be required without any glorification and with a balancing memorial to, for example, campaigners for peace and equality and the brave people who ran the "Underground Railway" that brought countless numbers of runaway slaves to freedom.