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Aug. 3, 2021 | Tuesday
Editorials and Opinions
Letter: Ryerson Park's name should not be changed

Dear editor:

I enjoy Ross Robinson's cheerful articles but object to his call to remove Egerton Ryerson's name from the park in Niagara-on-the-Lake ("Town needs to rename Ryerson Park," June 7).

I also object to removing Ryerson's name from the university in Toronto.

Communists and other dictatorships wipe out history recurrently.

In the Toronto Star debate on June 12, Indigenous Prof. Lila Rice argues Ryerson wanted free public education "for white boys only" and he believed the “North American Indian cannot be civilized."

Pine also scapegoats Rev. Egerton Ryerson and Christianity for the abuses against the Indigenous students in the residential schools. She also supported the activists who defaced and toppled Ryerson's statue on the campus. She writes from X University.

On the other side of the debate, Prof. Ron Stagg, from the same university, declares Ryerson blameless, saying he advocated free public education, was a missionary to the Mississaugas, taught them to "love thy neighbour" and added agriculture etc. to the curriculum as they wished. They appreciated him.

Ryerson died five years before the first of the residential schools opened. 

Certainly people of all religions, including secularism, denounce the sadistic, pedophilic and hypocritical criminals who abused Indigenous children in many residential schools. This should have been prevented.   

I caution Rice, Prof. Pamela Pameter (who has spoken on TVO) and journalists like Elizabeth Renzetti of the Globe and Mail not to spread hatred against innocent Canadians, past and present, which encourages activists and arsonists to smash statues and burn historic wooden churches.  Five have now been burned and I caution all to guard our historic buildings.   

Yes, Truth will lead to Reconciliation and Justice. 

Elizabeth Oliver-Malone