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Canadian University Rejects Statues of Prime Ministers

February 17, 2016
 

Wilfrid Laurier University is named for the man who was prime minister of Canada from 1896 to 1911. But on Wednesday night the university's board rejected a plan it had previously approved to place statues of 22 former prime ministers on its campus, CBC News reported. Supporters of the plan have said it would promote patriotism and understanding of history. But critics have said that some of the past prime ministers stood for offensive ideas, particularly with regard to indigenous Canadians. Further, they argue that the plan was particularly problematic because the statues would be on land that once belonged to indigenous groups. A statue of one of the prime ministers, John A. Macdonald, is already on the campus (at right) but will now be moved.

Statues on campuses have prompted numerous debates in the United States, as well as in Britain and in South Africa.

 
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