Premier Gordon Campbell and Guujaaw, President of the Haida Nation, announce a 'reconciliation protocol' they say ends a century of conflict, Vancouver, Dec. 11.
By Tom Fletcher
This follows the recent adoption by the U.S. (and soon by Canada) of the name Salish Sea for the inland waters now known as the Strait of Georgia, Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound.
The explorer known as Juan de Fuca was actually a Greek pilot serving on a 16th-century Spanish ship who made a questionable claim to have been the first European to sail the strait. Even his true name is uncertain, but his Spanish nickname is still immortalized with a provincial park on Vancouver Island.
Britain’s Queen Charlotte, wife of King George III, never visited Canada, much less Haida Gwaii. The strait at the north end of Vancouver Island is still named for her; thus she avoids the dustbin of colonial history.
If we can rename a major strait and group of islands without harm, it shouldn't be much trouble to rename the geographic features with unsavory names such as Squaw Peak.
This item is also a fitting rebuke to the people who think we'll forget about Indians if we eliminate Indian mascots. Get a clue, morons. We'll never have less Indian culture and history than we do now. As America becomes more multicultural, more interested in its diverse and complex history, we'll learn more about Indians, not less.
For more naming controversies, see Renaming Dead Indian Lake and Renaming Savage Island. For more on the inane mascot argument, see Mascots Teach Us Indians?
Below: "Premier Gordon Campbell and Guujaaw, President of the Haida Nation, announce a 'reconciliation protocol' they say ends a century of conflict, Vancouver, Dec. 11." (B.C. government photo)