Delingpole: Woke History Audit Confuses Anti-Slaver with Slaver

robert peel (1)
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A street in Wales has been put on the naughty step by the Welsh government because of its supposed historical associations with the slave trade. But the man after whom it is named was in fact one of Britain’s most ardent and heroic anti-slavers.

Peel Street in Wrexham is one of dozens of streets put on a warning list as part of a £170,000 audit — The Slave Trade and the British Empire — commissioned by the Welsh government in the wake of the briefly fashionable Black Lives Matter protests.

Though it doesn’t make it onto the Red danger list reserved for alleged monsters like Christopher Columbus, Lord Kitchener, Clive of India, and Francis Drake — “definite personal culpability” — it does make it onto the next-worst amber list marked “personal culpability uncertain”.

But the only reason it’s “uncertain” is because of the sloppiness of the woke crusaders who put the report together. They have confused Sir Robert Peel — the anti-slavery prime minister — with his slavery-supporting father.

True, both men confusingly share the same name. But the son was much more famous than the father and it’s after the son that the street is definitely named.

The mistake was spotted by journalist Tom Winnifrith who lives nearby.

He explains here:

It is named after his son, also called Sir Robert Peel who was not only an MP but also the Prime Minister. The clue is in the names of neighbouring streets: Bright, Cobden, and Villiers. What links the most famous men with those names and Peel? All were politicians in the nineteenth century and were the most important men in the abolition of the Corn Laws. Pushing through their abolition cost Peel his career since ,most in his party supported the Laws. But Peel knew it was the right thing to do to alleviate misery and starvation among the poor of this land. It is surely right to honour all four men for their good works on this matter.

Peel the Younger, he adds, was most definitely on the right side of the slavery argument:

The Younger Peel argued massively with his father on one big issue: slavery. The younger Peel was a lifelong abolitionist.  In 1818. Peel was a member of the Earl of Liverpool government that signed treaties with Spain, Portugal, and the Netherlands abolishing the slave trade. Peel supported the abolition of slavery throughout the British Empire in 1834. When Peel was prime minister, 1841 – 46, his government made treaties with South American countries such as Mexico, Uruguay, Bolivia, and Chile in 1843 abolishing the slave trade. In 1845, Peel authorised the establishment of the Anti-Slavery squadron with thirty-six ships, which made it one of the largest fleets in the world. Its role was to stamp out slavers sending poor folks to America.

It is clear that Peel Street in Wrexham is most certainly named after a man who not only fought slavery throughout his life but actually drove that agenda with success. And he also saved hundreds of thousands of poor folks back in Britain and Ireland from starvation.

Winnifrith goes on to quote the leader of the group which led the woke audit:

Gaynor Legall, Leader of the task and finish group who led the audit, said: “This a piece of work that I am immensely proud of because it gives a very thorough, factual account of Wales’ involvement in the Slave Trade and expands our knowledge of the history of Wales. It will hopefully lead to children learning the complete history, warts and all.”

Hmm. Interesting use of the words ‘thorough’ and ‘factual’, there. If you’re going to audit history, surely the least you ought to be able to do is get your basic facts right. There was a time, really not so long ago, when any half-way decent historian would have twigged instantly the connection between Peel, Bright, Cobden, and Villiers. But this level of basic knowledge is being eroded as universities increasingly use their history courses not as a way of understanding the past but pouring scorn on it and politicising it with modish concepts like “decolonising the curriculum”.

I’m reminded of the story a few years back when vigilantes vandalised the home of a paediatrician. They thought that it meant the same thing as paedophile. That was in Wales too. Maybe the general ignorance has grown more widespread…

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