Found this story over at OpiniPundit.
The Boston Globe reports in a column by Brian McGrory that the Provincetown, Mass. selectmen have voted to remove a painting that has hung in the chambers for years.
Selectwoman Sarah Peake spun her chair around near the end of the Nov. 14 meeting, gazed up at an oversized oil painting depicting the Pilgrims voting on the Mayflower Compact when they first landed in Provincetown, and declared that she wanted it removed.
Mind you, it’s not that she didn’t like the look or the colors or the style. It’s not that she thought it was too big or too small for the Judge Welsh Hearing Room. It’s not that it clashed with anything around it.
No, what Peake didn’t like was that the painting didn’t include any women. That and the fact that the painting’s only Indian — Native American, I’d better call him — wasn’t holding a ballot like everyone else.
The vote was 3 to 1 to remove the painting. The one, lone, voice of reason, Cheryl Andrews, Chairman of the Board of Selectmen said,
‘There’s this lovely oil painting. The thing is huge. It’s been up there since forever. It was painted by Max Bohm, who’s considered quite something in local art circles.
And Sarah Peake turns around and faces it, and it’s government. They’re voting. She says, ‘I’d like to talk about this painting. I find this painting disturbing.’ That’s a quote. She said it’s disturbing to her because there are no women in the painting and the only one not holding a ballot is the Native American Indian. And I thought, ‘Here we go.’
My dear Ms. Peake (and the other two members of the Board of Selectmen who voted to remove the painting),
It is a fact that only men voted at the time depicted in the painting. It is a fact that a Native American Indian would not have any kind of voting privileges with the colonists.
It is now a fact that any American Citizen may vote (with very few exceptions, such as convicted felons). At the time the painting depicts, there were no American citizens. There was no United States of America.
As much as some people would like to rewrite and revise history, this country was founded by a bunch of (now)dead, white, Christian, men. They wrote our constitution to give us the greatest freedoms. Freedoms to eventually write laws to allow women, Native American Indians, Blacks, and others the right to vote. Freedom to worship (or not) as each of us pleases. Sure, mistakes have been made, they will continue to be made for we have the freedom to make mistakes as well. We also have the freedom to recognize and learn from those mistakes and remedy them.
We can’t ignore our history. Our history, the mistakes and all, have made us who we are today. It’s time to recognize your mistake and put that painting back up on the wall.
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I went to Hobby Lobby last night to pick up a crochet booklet, some yarn, and a package of crochet hooks so I can teach my ten-year-old niece how to crochet. At the checkout, I said “Merry Christmas” to the clerk. She replied with a hearty, “Merry Christmas to you!”
I was at Wal-Mart on Friday to pick up a couple of things. I said “Merry Christmas” to the greeter and she said, “to you too.” The checkout clerk replied to my “Merry Christmas” with a “same to you.”
Last year I was out shopping with my mother and she said “Merry Christmas” to a clerk. The clerk seemed slightly taken aback at first, then said “Merry Christmas to you too”.
After Mom and I left the store, we concluded that with all the “can’t say Christmas” going on, she was shocked that we had wished her a Merry Christmas. Then she was happy that we had and wished us one as well.
Fifteen year old Christina Deforges died Wednesday, November 23rd in a Quebec hospital of respiratory failure.
Christina went into anaphylactic shock after kissing her boyfriend on Sunday, November 20. Christina was highly allergic to peanuts and her boyfriend had recently eaten peanut butter. She was given an injection of adrenaline immediately, as is standard procedure with a highly allergic person when exposed to the allergen, but it apparently wasn’t enough.
About 100 people die of food allergies every year in the United States.
We pray for her family and especially the boyfriend who must be feeling awful right now.