There is a 9-year-old girl living in my city who was on the front page of the only newspaper in town this morning. It seems that she wants to change the name of Plantation Street, where she lives, because of slavery. Plantation Street is in the middle-class suburb of Oakridge Acres in London, Ontario Canada. Canada never really had slavery. Or plantations. It’s a 1950’s designed subdivision, so the streets meander in circles and crescents and dead ends. There are plenty of mature trees and the lots are old fashioned big. (Hence, house prices there are skyrocketing.) Street names like Pinetree, Palmtree and Mahogany are also found in the area. Which would fit the definition of the word ‘plantation’ which is ‘a large group of plants, usually trees, under cultivation’. No possible connection to buying and selling humans here, except in the impressionable brain of this child. And her parents of course. They are raising funds (they need $10,000) to get the change made. I cannot think they will get it. And how does this get on the front page? With a picture of the child, grim faced. As a strategy to provoke and irritate I would imagine. Well in my case, it did both.
The path that family is on here is not a good one and I feel for that young girl. Offended by a word at 9 years old. She needed better guidance than she got. There is any number of windmills to tilt at today, but this is absurd.
Two good books to recommend. First, a Tom Clancy ‘Jack Ryan’ novel, “Power and Empire” ghost written by Marc Cameron. It ticks all the boxes. Tension, plots within plots, geopolitical rivalry, violence, and bad guys getting what they deserve. Not literature but a good read. Second, “Fracture: Life and Culture in the West, 1918-1938” by Philipp Blom, a sprawling sort of popular history of that era. I am finding it fascinating. I’m always looking for parallels to today in this kind of book. Clues to help understand our age. And there are some there. Like the desire by some to control art and language for social or political purposes. (see above) But history is not a wheel and the factors and personalities unique to the time must be accepted for what they are. Highly recommended though.
I also read this week that due to the frequency and reliability of the observations the US Navy is instituting a procedure to accept as fact and study UFO sightings by their pilots. Plainly put, there are more of them happening and they are getting harder and harder to explain. Wow. Could the most important thing to happen to humanity since we mastered fire be on the horizon?
Stay tuned and have a great week!