Amherst – What’s In A Name?

CBC reported in 2017 on the dark history of Jeffrey Amherst, including text from one of Amherst’s letter;

“You will do well to try to inoculate the Indians by means of blankets, as well as to try every other method that can serve to extirpate this execrable race. I should be very glad your scheme for hunting them down by dogs could take effect, but England is at too great a distance to think of that at present,” wrote Amherst in a 1763 letter.

The September 29, 2021 River Town Times reports, Councillor calls for no reference to Jeffrey Amherst in new school name.

“McArthur said he preferred if the new school would have a new name, free of any Jeffrey Amherst references, stating Jeffrey Amherst advocated genocide against the Indigenous population in the 1700s. The councillor did say he opposed changing the name of the town, noting residents have made it a beautiful and inclusive community.“I don’t think we should change the name of the town,” he said, adding people “have made it their own” despite the man for whom it was named.”

Is it not hypocritical to promote ‘a step towards reconciliation’ for the new high school, when council has no jurisdiction to do so, yet dismiss the idea of a name change for the town?

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