Wednesday, October 28, 2015

My letter to the Baltimore Sun RE Politically incorrect statues provide teachable moments by Alexander E. Hooke

Swans Reflecting Elephants, 1937 by Salvador Dali
Baltimore, MD -- 6/10/15 -- Confederate Generals Robert E. Lee (right) and Stonewall Jackson are depicted on horseback in a monument near the Baltimore Museum of Art. (Jerry Jackson/Baltimore Sun)

Artists Rebuild Destroyed Buddha Statues With Ghostly 3D Projection
RE Politically incorrect statues provide teachable moments

Dear Editor,

I applaud and totally agree with the very wise philosophy professor at Stevenson University, Alexander E. Hooke's thought provoking column "Politically incorrect statues provide teachable moments"

I like how Hooke calmly connects the dots between Salvidore Dali, Buddhist Statues, and Confederate symbols.  But I think he missed one crucial point... we human beings are not perfect. None of us. Every individual is a unique blend of good, bad and indifferent.

Public art depicting a hero is made to celebrate what many at the time see as someone to celebrate.  This is who we are, we have a complicated past created by real people, products of their time, who thought they were doing the right and necessary thing. Sometimes our predecessors were very right, sometimes they weren't. 

I'd rather live in a world that appreciates, generates and preserves art and artifacts, than a world where art and artifacts are pulverized by political and/or religious campaigners and task forces set up to decide which elements of our collective history and art should be condemned and destroyed figuratively or literally.

I'd rather live in a world where we the people are encouraged to stop and think. To individually reassess our own assumptions: A world where we are free to educate ourselves and maybe even carefully explore difficult conversations and topics. A world where there are teachable moments.  A world with more diplomacy- and less war.

Anne Selden Annab

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