Another take on America’s “statues problem”

An excellent editorial by the perceptive writer Sarah Vowell on commemorative statues.

Swerves back to Columbus monuments, and to their character as homages to Italian American heritage.

History– and memory– is complicated.

 

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Holocaust memorial omits reference to Jews

 

From today’s NYTimes, an article about the new Holocaust memorial in Canada (the country’s first, dedicated by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau), with a plaque that failed to mention Jews or anti-Semitism.

David Sweet, a lawmaker from the opposition Conservative Party, asked Canada’s Parliament, “How could the prime minister permit such a glaring omission of reference to anti-Semitism and the fact that the millions of men, women and children who were murdered were overwhelmingly Jewish?” He added: “If we are going to stamp out hatred of Jews, it is important to get history right.”

 

“Revising” history? A new historical marker for Sherman’s March

A new historical marker has gone up in Atlanta, and it is raising questions about historical “revisionism” and how events in the past– especially destructive and emotionally-fraught events, such as Sherman’s March to the Sea– how remembered and memorialized, how they are — literally– set in stone for the future.  ALTJPATLANTA1-articleLarge

“There’s still a strong resentment for what happened and how it happened and for Sherman himself,” Dr. James C. Cobb said. “They want to whitewash everything and make it so much nicer than it was. It wasn’t nice. War isn’t.

“You all the time run into college kids who don’t know which side Sherman was on — and their parents and certainly their grandparents would be aghast to know that. It’s not just a matter of education. It’s a matter of being the blank slate that younger generations present for revision or education that older generations don’t because they’re steeped in the mythology of their ancestors.”

New World Trade Center

http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/world-trade-center-reopens-business-26646782

This article is about the opening of the first offices in the new World Trade Center. I find it interesting that the new World Trade Center is both a memorial to 9/11 and, as this article says, “a symbolic return to some sort of normalcy” for the site of the biggest tragedy on American soil.

A Monument at O’Hare

Quite a while ago, as we walked along the grounds of the State Capitol, Mr. Horrigan told us about both the monuments and statues we saw and those far away. We discussed monuments and the variety of media which could be a monument, the function of monuments, and what aspects make a quality monument. In the (almost) exact words of Mr. Horrigan, “Planes are commonly used as monuments.” Well….VOILA! I found one on my recent travels through O’Hare airport.

An airplane as part of a monument dedicated to Lt. Cmdr. Edward Henry "Butch" O'Hare.

An airplane as part of a monument dedicated to Lt. Cmdr. Edward Henry “Butch” O’Hare.