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To: MPs, City Council, and the Mayor of Mississauga/Brampton/Caledon

Let's Rename Winston Churchill Blvd

Let's Rename Winston Churchill Blvd

In the wake of protests around the world regarding racism and racial inequality we need to examine the programming of racial inequality that exists within our own community of Peel Region.

The street, Winston Churchill Blvd, is named after the former Prime Minister of the UK, who was an important figure partly responsible for actions that led to winning World War 2. However, if we examine his life and history, including his own direct quotes, we learn that he was a white supremacist, racist, bigoted man, whose actions led to the mass murder of 3+ million people in his lifetime.

Some examples of his racist quotes and actions include the following...

In 1937, he told the Palestine Royal Commission: "I do not admit for instance, that a great wrong has been done to the Red Indians of America or the black people of Australia. I do not admit that a wrong has been done to these people by the fact that a stronger race, a higher-grade race, a more worldly wise race to put it that way, has come in and taken their place."

In 1943-44, his actions, or lack thereof, caused a severe famine in India which estimated to have killed 3 million people. He blamed the Indian people for the famine, claiming they "breed like rabbits".

He had promoted the use of poison gas against Kurds and Afghans during his role as minister of war and air in 1919 where he said he was "strongly in favour of using poisoned gas against uncivilized tribes"

Churchill said of his anti-colonialist adversary in 1931 (Gandhi) "It is alarming and nauseating to see Mr Gandhi, a seditious Middle Temple lawyer, now posing as a fakir… striding half-naked up the steps of the Vice-regal Palace"

Churchill said of Gandhi “(he) ought to be lain bound hand and foot at the gates of Delhi, and then trampled on by an enormous elephant with the new Viceroy seated on its back.”

Churchill said “I hate Indians, they are a beastly people with a beastly religion.”

As such, we ask that Peel Region City Councils (Brampton/Mississauga/Caledon) begin a public process to rename Winston Churchill Blvd to honour a more appropriate person, place or event.

We also believe that this process should be transparent and undertaken in partnership particularly with Black-lead organisations and historical societies in order to create a long list of potential candidates.

For more information about his atrocities please refer to these articles...
https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-29701767
https://www.jacobinmag.com/2018/01/winston-churchill-british-empire-colonialism
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/winston-churchill-from-accusations-of-anti-semitism-to-the-blunt-refusal-that-led-to-the-deaths-of-9999181.html

Churchill and the 1943 Bengal Famine - Malcolm Gladwell
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x1Vw7Z_2SD8

Dr Shashi Tharoor MP - Britain Does Owe Reparations (Statements regarding Winston Churchill)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f7CW7S0zxv4

Why is this important?

This issue is about being honest with our history. Not overlooking the flaws of a human being, but examining them and understanding if that person is worth honouring. In our honest opinion, we should NOT be giving such an honour to a man like this, especially in a region as diverse at Peel Region. We need to make a change.

If we truly wish for our public street names and monuments to reflect our values and priorities we must consider engaging the public in the process of excising those names which are no longer worthy of our honour or respect. Names such as that of Winston Churchill.

Street names change frequently and it's important that this one does.

It is also worth mentioning that Churchill's monument, erected in Parliament Square, Westminster, has been sprayed with graffiti during a Black Lives Matter protest.

https://www.bbc.com/news/av/uk-england-london-52972531/black-lives-matter-protest-why-was-churchill-s-statue-defaced

Mississauga, ON, Canada

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Updates

2020-06-11 07:39:09 -0400

50 signatures reached

2020-06-10 17:58:18 -0400

25 signatures reached

2020-06-10 17:09:44 -0400

10 signatures reached