The John A. MacDonald statue in Montreal has become the subject of controversy in the wake of the protests regarding the murder of George Floyd. Activists in Montreal are calling for the statue to be taken down, according to Fresh Daily.
The statue was vandalized with paint by activists who wish to remain anonymous however they have labelled themselves as "anti-colonial vandals." The group painted over the MacDonald monument as a way to address his anti-indigenous policies.
The words "RCMP Rape Native Women/Kill Native Men" were also written onto the base of the monument.
"The MacDonald Monument is the Canadian equivalent of a racist, Confederate statue in the United States," said one activists in a statement released by the group Monday morning.
"It stands as a symbol of colonialism and the subjugation of Indigenous peoples. The MacDonald Monument celebrates an individual whose policies are directly responsible for the genocide of Indigenous peoples in Canada, and the celebration of white supremacy."
John A. MacDonald served as Canada's first Prime Minister and is widely viewed as the founder of the country.
"The great aim of our legislation has been to do away with the tribal system and assimilate the Indian people in all respects with the other inhabitants of the Dominion as speedily as they are fit to change," wrote MacDonald in 1887, regarding the creation of the Indian Act.
There are several statues and monuments of John A. MacDonald across Canada.
A petition has been launched calling for Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante to remove the statue now has over 16,000 signatures. Last week, Plant said that she has no plans to remove the statue but rather suggested adding an additional plaque to go with the monument explaining the complex history of our country and MacDonald's role within it.
The description of the petition reads, "There is absolutely no reason or room for a racist, colonial, white nationalist to be celebrated on unceded Indigenous land," It also states that "The very fact that this monument exists is an example of the white washing of cultural history, and true 'reconciliation' does not include the glorification of those that actively pursued Indigenous genocide."
Many statues of controversial historical figures have been removed officially or toppled down via protestors around the world in the wake of George Floyd's murder by a Minneapolis police officer. Those statues include Christopher Columbus, Abraham Lincoln, and Winston Churchill, among others.