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Should Ryerson or any University change its name ?


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luckycharm

https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2021/06/07/pressure-mounts-for-ryerson-university-to-change-its-name-what-will-it-take-for-that-to-happen.html

Haniff came to Canada from Guyana on a student visa to study social work at the university in 1970. He says he “unwittingly” attended the university not knowing Egerton Ryerson’s legacy as an architect of Canada’s residential school system.

Demonstrations and calls for the university to change its name have ramped up in recent days following the discovery of the remains of 215 students buried in unmarked graves on the grounds of a former residential school in Kamloops, B.C.

https://globalnews.ca/news/7926605/ryerson-statue-university-removed-toronto/

A statue of Egerton Ryerson at Ryerson University, which was pulled down earlier Sunday evening by demonstrators, will not be “restored or replaced,” the university said Sunday.

Should any University change its name  for whatever reasons/ revalations?

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Five years ago, I would have agreed with a lot of the takes in this thread. And I was reflecting, recently, on what changed for me. Why did I used to care so much about the preservation of the na

Queen's University's name doesn't really have a lot of relevance to students these days, given the band's terminal decline since Freddie died.

So everything else aside, I am kinda excited that we are having this forum’s first Big Discussion That Pisses Everyone Off. While I vehemently disagree with some of you and very much applaud others, t

LMP
  • Law Student

There would need to be a lot of pressure to force a name change. It may well depend on how sustained the anger directed towards them is.

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Jaggers

I think it's almost inevitable that Ryerson will change its name within a year or two.

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Kurrika
1 hour ago, Jaggers said:

I think it's almost inevitable that Ryerson will change its name within a year or two.

Probably just as soon as they can convince Peter Allard or the equivalent to buy a university name.

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Jaggers

Their business school is already named after Ted Rogers. And you could keep using "R" branded stuff.

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Barry
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, luckycharm said:

Should any University change its name  for whatever reasons/ revalations?

yes  

Unless you would be ok with an Adolf Hitler School of Arts I don't see how anyone could argue that it's not harmful to keep the name. 

Edited by Barry
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Gamgee
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I'm just impressed by the foresight of the law school, proactively renaming it Lincoln Alexander School of Law early, potentially avoiding the confusion associated with the wider university rebranding plan, and aligning the name to the brand they want to foster. 

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King of Queens
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Posted (edited)

I'm surprised that they haven't changed it already, especially with the atmosphere and culture Ryerson seems to be trying to build to differentiate itself from other unis.

Edited by King of Queens
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Barry
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8 minutes ago, RUIQ said:

I'm just impressed by the foresight of the law school, proactively renaming it Lincoln Alexander School of Law early

As well as with teaching Python.

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NowOrNever
1 hour ago, RUIQ said:

I'm just impressed by the foresight of the law school, proactively renaming it Lincoln Alexander School of Law early, potentially avoiding the confusion associated with the wider university rebranding plan, and aligning the name to the brand they want to foster. 

The university should change its name to Lincoln Alexander university and blow Ryerson as far as they can.

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Salazar
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1 hour ago, Barry said:

yes  

Unless you would be ok with an Adolf Hitler School of Arts I don't see how anyone could argue that it's not harmful to keep the name. 

Well, that’s quite the false equivalency. Ryerson was no Hitler; he was one of the most influential proponents of free education in Ontario.

The proper blame for the abuses Indigenous people suffered in residential schools lies with the people who committed them. Ryerson had nothing to do with those abuses and is being scapegoated for what other people did long after his death with the education system he proposed.

More info: https://nationalpost.com/opinion/opinion-egerton-ryerson-has-been-falsely-accused-of-trying-to-erase-indigenous-culture

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Barry
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5 minutes ago, Salazar said:

Well, that’s quite the false equivalency. Ryerson was no Hitler; he was one of the most influential proponents of free education in Ontario.

The proper blame for the abuses Indigenous people suffered in residential schools lies with the people who committed them. Ryerson had nothing to do with those abuses and is being scapegoated for what other people did long after his death with the education system he proposed.

More info: https://nationalpost.com/opinion/opinion-egerton-ryerson-has-been-falsely-accused-of-trying-to-erase-indigenous-culture

I wasn't saying they were the same, I was just responding the question of should Universities change their names, the answer being yes because names matter. 

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Salazar
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1 minute ago, Barry said:

I wasn't saying they were the same, I was just responding the question of should Universities change their names, the answer being yes because names matter. 

You said: “Unless you would be ok with an Adolf Hitler School of Arts I don't see how anyone couldargue that it's not harmful to keep the name. 

I wouldn’t be okay with an Adolf Hitler School of Arts; I argue it’s not harmful to keep the name. If you’re going to change the name, that decision should be based on facts and not misinformation.

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Barry
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Just now, Salazar said:

You said: “Unless you would be ok with an Adolf Hitler School of Arts I don't see how anyone couldargue that it's not harmful to keep the name. 

I wouldn’t be okay with an Adolf Hitler School of Arts; I argue it’s not harmful to keep the name. If you’re going to change the name, that decision should be based on facts and not misinformation.

yeah but that's your own baseline. It's harmful to keep the name, that's been demonstrated pretty strongly, for public safety alone. 

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Salazar
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4 minutes ago, Barry said:

yeah but that's your own baseline. It's harmful to keep the name, that's been demonstrated pretty strongly, for public safety alone. 

Have there been issues with public safety?

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Barry
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1 minute ago, Salazar said:

Have there been issues with public safety?

I mean if the the statue caused some I don't see why keeping the name wouldn't have that same potential. 

 

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Salazar
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2 minutes ago, Barry said:

I mean if the the statue caused some I don't see why keeping the name wouldn't have that same potential. 

 

What public safety concerns were caused by the statue? And on what basis do we then claim that they must be caused by the name as well?

Maybe we should tear down the buildings on campus too just to be safe.

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ZineZ
  • Lawyer
3 hours ago, Jaggers said:

I think it's almost inevitable that Ryerson will change its name within a year or two.

It's a given at this point. They've commissioned a review whose mandate includes considering a name change. 

It'll take a bit longer - but at this point the change is essentially a given. 

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Jaggers
Posted (edited)
2 minutes ago, ZineZ said:

It's a given at this point. They've commissioned a review whose mandate includes considering a name change. 

It'll take a bit longer - but at this point the change is essentially a given. 

I heard a prof being interviewed on CBC and the last question was "What will you do if they don't change the name in September?" His response was "We'll continue the discussion, and it will be changed at a later date."

Edited by Jaggers
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Mountebank
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Queen's University's name doesn't really have a lot of relevance to students these days, given the band's terminal decline since Freddie died.

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LittleVeggie
15 minutes ago, Mountebank said:

Queen's University's name doesn't really have a lot of relevance to students these days, given the band's terminal decline since Freddie died.

Thanks to RuPaul I do believe it's found a new lease on life, so there's that.

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epeeist
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Maybe it should be changed, but name changes should be based on some specific principles not mob rule - e.g. if Egerton Ryerson is bad for what he thought 150 years ago, how much worse are PET and Chretien re the 1969 white paper? Ryerson (and MacDonald) at least have the excuses of being of their time and thinking assimilation was better than respecting Indigenous culture (i.e. the person mattered, not their culture - those most responsible for deaths through negligence or worse were much later). If PET and Chretien get a pass a century later, where's the consistency? Do PET and Chretien get a pass because they tried and failed, so no consequences?

This Volokh post from May suggested that if an institution is named after someone bad but who was nonetheless very significant, perhaps add another name (in that instance suggesting Frederick Douglass):

https://reason.com/volokh/2021/05/21/thoughts-on-renaming-john-marshall-law-school/

 

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luckycharm
Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Salazar said:

Well, that’s quite the false equivalency. Ryerson was no Hitler; he was one of the most influential proponents of free education in Ontario.

The proper blame for the abuses Indigenous people suffered in residential schools lies with the people who committed them. Ryerson had nothing to do with those abuses and is being scapegoated for what other people did long after his death with the education system he proposed.

More info: https://nationalpost.com/opinion/opinion-egerton-ryerson-has-been-falsely-accused-of-trying-to-erase-indigenous-culture

This is an A+ answer for me.  

"The proper blame for the abuses Indigenous people suffered in residential schools lies with the people who committed them. Ryerson had nothing to do with those abuses and is being scapegoated for what other people did long after his death with the education system he proposed."

 

Edited by luckycharm
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epeeist
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Historical people are almost always going to be flawed from our perspective. Racist and sexist probably most commonly. Someone like Ryerson who was an advocate for education including of Indigenous people was probably less racist than the average white person of the time. There were anti-slavery advocates who didn't advocate equality only non-slavery and promulgated racist language and ideas; suffragists who were pro-woman but racist (including some of Canada's famous five...), etc. Names of schools etc. aren't carved in stone (even if they literally are...). By all means change them if you want. But try approaching the topic with something other than mob rule.

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luckycharm
27 minutes ago, epeeist said:

Historical people are almost always going to be flawed from our perspective. Racist and sexist probably most commonly. Someone like Ryerson who was an advocate for education including of Indigenous people was probably less racist than the average white person of the time. There were anti-slavery advocates who didn't advocate equality only non-slavery and promulgated racist language and ideas; suffragists who were pro-woman but racist (including some of Canada's famous five...), etc. Names of schools etc. aren't carved in stone (even if they literally are...). By all means change them if you want. But try approaching the topic with something other than mob rule.

"Historical people are almost always going to be flawed from our perspective"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_McGill#:~:text=A fur trader%2C slaveholder and,in excess of £100%2C000.

James McGill- A fur trader, slaveholder and land owner,

 

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