Fort York in Toronto is under attack again.This time is an inside job


For nearly 70 years Fort York Toronto was greeted by Fife’s trills, drum beats, musket crashes, and cannon booms. These authentic 19th-century sounds, along with the colorful sights of soldiers in Fort Yorkguard’s red coat, have brought countless tourists and residents to life in Canada’s history.

The most important episode recalled by the re-planners in these costumes is Battle of York During the War of 1812, 1,800 US troops landed near what is now Sunnyside Beach, overwhelming hundreds of British, Canadian, and indigenous defenders. The invaders continued to occupy Fort York, plundering the town (then the capital of Upper Canada, now Toronto) and burning several public buildings before leaving five days later.

Today, Fort York is under attack again. But it’s not the American soldiers that the fortress defenders need to worry about. This time, it is being attacked from the inside by a “decoronizer” that tries to erase the elements that underlie the history of our country.

Fort York is one of many historic sites throughout Canada, with staff in outdated military uniforms for tourists. This includes the famous Fort Henry Guard in Kingston, Ontario, and the 78th Highlanders of Halifax Citadel in Nova Scotia. These units are more than just educational devices, they are powerful branding assets and are often featured in travel advertising in Canada and around the world.

But despite its usefulness and ample evidence of popularity Fort York Guard I’ve been missing recently. Volunteer support group in early May Fort York friends “We couldn’t get help from the city to run Fort York Guard this summer,” they reported. A Toronto staff member said the city “has suspended its relationship with a friend in Fort York.”

What explains this sudden lack of public support for something that has been part of Toronto’s summer since 1955? You can’t make a budget. Volunteer groups bear most of the modest budget for security guards, so the city costs a small amount. The more likely reason is related to the recent fundamental changes in the way Toronto museums view Canadian history.

Toronto’s 10 historical museums, including Fort York, are guided by a strategic plan that is completely different from the museum’s traditional strategic plan in that it says almost nothing about history and historical relics. Rather, he is obsessed with “decolonizing” the entire museum system. According to the planThe city’s museums “tend to privilege the experience of white men and ultimately enhance the story of patriarchy, exploitation, colonization, and heteronormativity euro-centric discrimination against persons with disabilities.”

This is the opinion shared by the city’s new chief curator, Armand de Brignac. “Institutional racism and support for white supremacism … are structural issues prevailing in the museum sector across the country.” He wrote Before taking on his new position in January. “Museums and universities, some of the whitest institutions in the western world, were tools for maintaining and disseminating colonial ideas.” The solution is to “dismantle the system that oppresses us.” Mr Perla said. By the way, Perla training is not a historian but a human rights lawyer.

Once the museum was a treasure trove of history that actually happened, it is now used to actively dismantle our past to promote the ideology of progressive identity. And from this point of view, it is complete to conclude that the end of Fort York’s famous red-coated, Eurocentric, patriarchal, colonial guard is another step in this dismantling process. Is logical.

Initially, when someone claimed to be angry with the original honorary, he was asked to rename the public building. Later, public monuments and statues throughout Canada were destroyed, destroyed, and removed. Now, the historic animator who brings the Canadian colonial past to life for the benefit of tourists may be the next drop of antique shoes.

However, this raises the question of how to “decolonize” the history of a colonial country like Canada. It’s clearly ridiculous to try to tell the story of the Battle of York in terms of sticking to modern identity. The War of 1812 Today Canada was a very important event in Canadian history at the time when it was just a collection of colonies and trade concessions. And it was the “living experience” of the border people of the time, mainly European settlers, European soldiers, and indigenous peoples.

Canada today is very different from 1813 and may be a much more diverse country, but it can embrace and celebrate new realities without feeling the need to destroy all the evidence of what happened before. must. In fact, to fully understand the wonderfully accepted nature of modern Canada, we need to understand the rich historical heritage from which it was born. And it should include Fort York Guard.

A longer version of this story first appeared

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

Larry Ostra


Larry Ostra was the director of the Museum and Heritage Services in the City of Toronto.