Now they are coming for your statue

 

As the rest of the world pulls down statues and rewrites history, New Zealand has decided to join the party. The statue of Captain James Cook, at Gisborne, is going to be removed, and erected somewhere else. The Telegraph UK  reports quote:

statue of Captain Cook will be removed from a hill in New Zealand following protests by the local Maori community which says its ancestors arrived there long before the famous British explorer.

The council in Gisborne on the North Island said it will relocate the statue, which was erected in 1969 but has been repeatedly defaced by vandals who have daubed it in red paint, stolen its sword, and once covered Cook in a painted white bikini and sandals.  end quote.

Damaging and defacing things of historical significance have always been a nasty little habit of some Maori people. Just remember the attack on the Americas Cup, which brought equal pride and honour to all New Zealanders. But one scratch on a memorial or artefact of theirs, and the screams of racism can be heard for four hundred miles. quote:

Leaders of the local Ngati Oneone tribe say historical records show that Cook’s crew shot nine of their people, killing six. They say Cook’s arrival was eventually followed by European settlement, which led to their dispossession and the demise of their culture. end quote.

Those people that were shot were peacefully going about their business, were they? quote:

Meredith Akuhata-Brown, a Gisborne councillor, said the council voted unanimously to move the statue, which stands atop a local ancestral hill known as Titirangi, to a museum as part of the 250th anniversary commemorations of Cook’s arrival. end quote.

I guarantee that statue will never see the light of day again. quote:

She said it might be replaced by a statue of Raikaitane, the Maori chief at the time of Cook’s landing.

“It’s significant because James never climbed Titirangi… and so for local iwi  it’s been a massive disappointment that he’s maintained that space for as long as he has,” she told Radio New Zealand. end quote.

Did Raikaitane ever climb that hill then? Of course, he must have done, if Cook’s statue is being taken down because he never did. quote:

The council said the plaza at the top of the hill will be redesigned to “celebrate the Maori history of this area and the ancestors who arrived here before Captain Cook”.

“The Cooks Plaza will be upgraded so iwi stories and cultural design elements can be shared from this significant location… to create an aesthetic and safe gathering space,” the council said in a statement. end quote.

See how we are doing two things here. First, we are rewriting history. Secondly, we are allowing the mob rule mentality. It will now be a ‘safe’ space. Whereas before, it was unsafe.

It was only unsafe because the locals insisted on behaving in an uncivilised manner. The statue itself didn’t jump down and start attacking people with a sword.

And of course, while we are here: quote:

Authorities will also consider renaming Poverty Bay, the local bay which was named by Cook after he landed there but could not resupply his ship.

The New Zealand Geographic Board this week indicated its support to adopt a dual name for the bay –  Turanganui-a-Kiwa/Poverty Bay – to incorporate its Maori title. end quote.

Well, what do you know? The place is going to be renamed… to something completely unpronounceable.

I have no issue with Maori history being honoured and observed here. It is right and proper that it should be. It is just that the European settlers, who also have descendants living here, also have a right to have their own history told and that history is slowly being removed and rewritten, one statue at a time.

Captain James Cook was dead right. Poverty Bay is a completely apt name for the place. More so in the 21st century than ever before.

 


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Accountant. Boring. Loves tax. Needs to get out more. Loves the environment, but hates the Greens. Has been called a dinosaur. Wears it with pride.

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