I see that Liverpool University have just agreed to rename Gladstone Hall because he (quote) ”fell short of wholeheartedly fighting for the abolition of slavery”, and because Gladstone’s father was a slave owner.
To vilify Britain’s most progressive 19th century Prime Minister, a vehement anti-imperialist who proposed home rule for Ireland, laid the basis of the welfare state, and vastly extended voting rights, amongst many other important reforms, is beyond ignorant.
Sadly, these ‘woke’ students and academics fall a long way short too – not least in their capacity for joined-up critical thought and historical perspective.
”All the world over, I will back the masses against the classes”. ~ William Ewart Gladstone
….and a thought on Edward Colston.
Colston’s involvement in slavery was as a director of the Royal African Company. The ‘Royal’ in that title is not meaningless. The company was set up specifically to make the monarch rich. A far more practical way to honour the memory of the slaves would be to abolish the monarchy. Now that would be a meaningful action.
”The word “slavery” conjures up images of shackles and transatlantic ships – depictions that seem relegated firmly to the past. But more people are enslaved today than at any other time in history. Slaves clean houses and flats; produce the clothes we wear; pick the fruit and vegetables we eat; trawl the seas for the shrimp on our restaurant plates; and dig for the minerals used in our smartphones, makeup and electric cars…..”
~ article by Kate Hodal