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Demitri_C

Racism Part two

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10 minutes ago, blandy said:

I read a thing about the bloke the statue was of. It said he wasn't a slave owner, and that the statue was put up for his philanthropic deeds.

That said, he was implicated, if that's the right word, in the slave trade. Not directly involved but some sort of owner of a company that was clearly involved in lave trading and horrible abuses of people.

In a sort of reverse order, by ‘implicated’ in the slave trade, he actually became the highest ranking official in a company who’s very business was trading in slaves. If that’s implicated, I guess the guys on the factory floor physically making bombs are more to blame than the CEO of a bomb factory?

I can see how if he inherited a far away sugar plantation 250 years ago then there’s a grey area that can be debated over being implicated. But not when you’re running the slaver ships. That’s not implicated, that’s guilty.

Yes, the statue is there for his philanthropy to the people of Bristol, given from the money he made trading slaves. I guess Pablo Escobar dished out a fair bit of his drug money, perhaps his statue to could take a turn on the now empty plinth? Or maybe Jimmy Saville?

It’s not an easy point, and Tony is absolutely right, we run the strong risk of a cultural purge. But I think that having him down as a philanthropist that was implicated is about as soft a focus as you could put on it.

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37 minutes ago, lapal_fan said:

Yep - absolutely.

The sooner boarders are abolished and free movement of anyone and everyone is allowed (LOL THANKS BREXIT), the better.

Just because we won the birth lottery and got borneded in a decent country shouldn't go against those bought up in very shit situations - let them travel and give them opportunities to grow and develop - just don't do it next door to me though because their food **** stinks and their language sounds scary innit? 

Sounds good. I’d probably have about 100 family members move here straight away. :)

Times that by another 2 million and you white boys will all soon be pals with Farage ;)

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8 minutes ago, blandy said:

He was from Bristol, and spent a fortune on good deeds in Bristol. But he was also a slave bod, before apparently undergoing a Damascene conversion that slavery was bad.

Which is fine but it doesn't give it a degree of historical relevance that the pyramids have or the Colosseum has as were being compared against. I just don't see that there's any historical reason to keep the statue there or maybe its more that the historical relevance of it doesn't hold up to the offence that it rightly causes a large number of people.

As it stood it was a statue commemorating a man who was heavily involved in the slave trade which most people (me included) would walk past without batting an eyelid. Its only with the protest that the majority of people have had this brought to their attention.

An attempt to call pulling down this statue a slippery slope to burning historical books or pulling down major historical monuments is somewhat disingenuous. 

I guess the point that I was trying to make was that a statue to a person serves no purpose other than to commemorate that person (unless as you suggested it is in a museum with an accompanying plaque and/or information on the person). I just don't see how anybody can argue that that statue should be there in 2020.

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Just now, blandy said:

The Pyramids is a distraction, as they weren't built by slaves, not do they celebrate slave trade people. The coliseum and other stuff in Rome1500 years ago -

its not really a  distraction , I very much doubt the statue in Bristol was erected for services to Slavery  , so the Colston statue doesn't "celebrate" slavery either  .... the other examples are monuments to slave owners  , people / civilisations who profited from  slavery ..... the world was build on slavery 

 

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I think that more people are more active on various social media about this statue being removed, than they were about George Floyd's murder, and the subsequent activism (including on this forum) shows the systematic racism we have tbh. 

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2 minutes ago, blandy said:

He was from Bristol, and spent a fortune on good deeds in Bristol. But he was also a slave bod, before apparently undergoing a Damascene conversion that slavery was bad.

And his name is still on many of the buildings his money went towards. I think the main distinction is between organisations he donated to that serve a function and tell part of the man's story and a statue built by others to idolise.Now the statue has come down a lot more people will know what that name means and I imagine there will be some institutions voluntarily renaming themselves.

People talk about pulling down things built by slaves, but I really can't see the relevance. I don't think anyone thinks the statue was built by slaves as it was built after slavery was abolished, it was built to commemorate a successful human trafficker.

As an aside, that statue has been controversial in Bristol as long as I can remember. People in Bristol have largely wanted it removed but it always seems to me in the middle of some organisations or another fighting and using it as a political tool. It also makes me laugh that people talk about preserving history considering the statue has been used as a tool to try and rewrite it e.g.*

Quote

In 2018, with involvement of the community, an official plaque was arranged for the statue to inform the public about more of Colston's history.[19] Conservative councillor Richard Eddy and the Society of Merchant Venturers (an organisation Colton belonged to) objected to the wording and were successful in, among other things, removing mention of Colston's role as a Tory MP and selective nature of his philanthropy, and disputed the exact number and ages of the thousands of children he trafficked.[19] The plaque was rewritten with large involvement from the Society of Merchant Venturers, but the wording was vetoed by Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees, who saw the Society having too much say in the process, instructing more parts of the community to be involved in producing the plaque.

*Wikipedia

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Also, talking about his philanthropy, 2 points...

Was there this level of anger when Savile's statue came down in Glasgow? He did some bad things, but did tonnes for charity.

Forgetting to mention, that Colston was so staunchly partisan that anybody who didn't agree with his political views would not have any money spent on them or their areas.

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16 minutes ago, tom_avfc said:

Are you actually suggesting that there's some sort of historical relevance to a statue of Edward Colston being in Bristol? What purpose does it serve to have a statue of him there? Is there anything we can learn from a statue of him there? 

I mean I kind of get the point as to where it stops but surely this is pushing it a bit. As a side note I don't really think we should be pulling down any statues but in this case I don't think the statue should have been there in the first place and given that they have seemingly been petitioned to remove it for a number of years with no effect I can understand the reasons for doing so.

Colston was a huge benefactor to Bristol as i understand it , i don't think Bristol erected a statue just to piss off some abolitionists living in the area

 

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Just now, StefanAVFC said:

Also, talking about his philanthropy, 2 points...

Was there this level of anger when Savile's statue came down in Glasgow? He did some bad things, but did tonnes for charity.

Forgetting to mention, that Colston was so staunchly partisan that anybody who didn't agree with his political views would not have any money spent on them or their areas.

It's not a genuine argument. Just like saying they should have gone through proper channels, which has failed for years despite overwhelming popular support.

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Just now, tonyh29 said:

its not really a  distraction , I very much doubt the statue in Bristol was erected for services to Slavery  , so the Colston statue doesn't "celebrate" slavery either  .... the other examples are monuments to slave owners  , people / civilisations who profited from  slavery ..... the world was build on slavery 

 

Anything and everything pre-1950 which is grande in scale was built by methods which exploited someone (most likely). 

The UK was built on immoral actions from colonialisation.  Same with France, Spain, Russia, USA, China etc etc. 

One question I have (genuinely);

The slave trade as we know now is innately wrong.  It exploited people of colour/race - at the time though - did the people who were complicit in it (from both slave driver, to the slave) know it was wrong?  

That may sound like a stupid question, and it is in many ways (chain dumping in the sea for example is someone who knows what they were doing was wrong), but was there a degree of "this is just how it is" at the time (From both sides)? Like how we work 9-5 until we're 65-70 with 25 days a year to call our own? 

Obviously I'm not saying the conditions now are anything like the conditions slaves were put under, but I'm asking about the acceptance of "well, yea it's shit, but that's life?". 

 

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He was a huge benefactor to those who agreed with him politically.

Also, people have tried to have the statue removed for years. As Sam said above, even adding a plaque outlining the bad things he was involved was got stuck in political mud and never happened.

 

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1 minute ago, tonyh29 said:

Colston was a huge benefactor to Bristol as i understand it , i don't think Bristol erected a statue just to piss off some abolitionists living in the area

The whole point is that the reason he was 'a huge benefactor to Bristol' is because he made a fortune through the slave trade. There is not some kind of separate duality here, where on the one side you have Good Colston the Benefactor and on the other Bad Colston the Slave Trader. They are one and the same thing.

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Just now, HanoiVillan said:

The whole point is that the reason he was 'a huge benefactor to Bristol' is because he made a fortune through the slave trade. There is not some kind of separate duality here, where on the one side you have Good Colston the Benefactor and on the other Bad Colston the Slave Trader. They are one and the same thing.

Also it's worth noting I'm pretty sure it wasn't publicly known he was a slave trader when the statue was first erected.

Edited by Sam-AVFC

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I find it amazing how many of us have suddenly become experts on the life of Mr Colston :lol: 

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7 minutes ago, snowychap said:

 

 

Olusoga presents the programme A House Through Time. It's currently on BBC2, and this series focuses on a house built in 18th century Bristol so a fair chunk covers Bristol and its relationship with slavery. He's brilliant, and so is the programme. 

Edited by Milfner
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1 minute ago, lapal_fan said:

I find it amazing how many of us have suddenly become experts on the life of Mr Colston :lol: 

It's great the impact the statue being pulled down like that has had isn't it!

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Just now, HanoiVillan said:

The whole point is that the reason he was 'a huge benefactor to Bristol' is because he made a fortune through the slave trade. There is not some kind of separate duality here, where on the one side you have Good Colston the Benefactor and on the other Bad Colston the Slave Trader. They are one and the same thing.

I wasn't  making a case for Colston , i was answering the poster who asked " Why he has a statue in Bristol"

 

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