Vandals have defaced John. A. Macdonald statue in Place du Canada, seen in Montreal on Friday August 17, 2018. (Allen McInnis / MONTREAL GAZETTE) ORG XMIT: 61236 Montreal’s Sir John A. Macdonald monument has once again been vandalized.
The leftist group No Borders Media says “a group of anonymous local anti-colonial, anti-racist, anti-capitalist activists” covered the statue in red paint on Saturday night as an act of protest against white supremacy. Colonial & Racist John A. Macdonald Monument once again vandalized with red paint in Montreal (with video). For details, visit: https://t.co/hCK4gqTmhK … @NoBordersMedia is sharing this info with the public, but we are not responsible for this action. #cdnpoli #polqc #polmtl pic.twitter.com/RSaAwpWZF6 — No Borders Media (@NoBordersMedia) October 7, 2018 Macdonald’s role in history has been subject to considerable recent debate, both in academic circles and Indigenous communities. While he’s best known as Canada’s first prime minister, Macdonald’s legacy has a much darker side.
During a famine in the prairies in the 1880s, the prime minister ordered the Department of Indian Affairs to withhold food rations to the Plain and Wood Cree and Assiniboine people until they cleared their land and made way for the Canadian Pacific Railroad.
Macdonald was Prime Minister when Canada’s first residential schools were created. In its 2015 report,The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada described the residential schools program as “cultural genocide.”
Macdonald’s government also deprived men of Chinese descent of the right to vote and imposed an entry tax to halt Chinese immigration.
He was in power during the North-West Rebellion and subsequent hanging of its leader, Louis Riel.
No Borders Media says it was not responsible for the action, but added that the action was inspired by the American movement to target symbols of white supremacy, such as Confederate statues.
“Macdonald’s statue belongs in a museum,” the group wrote , “not as a monument taking up public space in Montreal.”
Protestors have doused the statue in red paint on multiple occasions in recent years, most recently in August .
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