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In an online question-and-answer session over the weekend, angry members criticized the organization’s directors for pursuing a « witch hunt » in a new report linking more than 90 NNF holdings to slavery and colonialism.
One member, identified only as Diana of Leicester, objected to NT spending money on the report released in the wake of the summer protests about « Black Lives Matter »
The Trust’s decision to publish the 115-page analysis – which includes the Churchill home page, Chartwell – was the focus of nearly a thousand questions submitted by members at a virtual general assembly meeting
Diana said the majority of members just want to see beautiful homes and gardens without being nervous about others’ opinions.
Another member, John of Wareham, asked, “Why was the National Trust instigating a witch hunt in the lives of the previous landlords?
« Your members wish to enjoy bona fide donated properties without having to endure the unfortunate wake-up agenda of Modern Trust. »
Another, named just Sue of Bedford, asked, “Why is the National Fund sponsoring the Awakened Corps?
« With good intentions, the names of many of our heroes have been misrepresented and the loyal National Trust members are intimidated. »
Director General Hillary McGrady agreed that many people had questions about the report but insisted that it was « not an attempt to impose new information on people »
She said NT was still deciding how to respond to the information, adding: « This was about understanding more about the properties we own.
« Yes, the majority of our visitors only want to enjoy our property, but there will be people who want to know more. It does not mean in any way to expose anyone »
President Tim Parker also insisted that the trust is « not a political organization, » but a charity
He said, “Black Lives Matter has generated a lot of positive and negative interest and there is no doubt that there has been a renewed feeling about the unfair treatment of black populations around the world.
“Every organization has reacted to this in an effort to be more open and fair but this is a general sentiment
“We are not members of the BLM if our mention of Black Lives Matter is merely a reflection or our belief that we should not have a racist society It is nothing more or no less
“Personally, I am not enthusiastic to look at the distant past and judge it from the point of view of the twenty-first century. I want to reassure members that our focus is to keep our groups going.
“I hope, with the passage of time, you will see that the Trust has in no way become a political organization that has been taken over by a group of Awakened Folk or anything like that.”
A banner and an American flag are placed on the Republic Monument in Paris
Police officers are seen protesting police brutality and the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis Police custody in Paris
French riot police are holding a demonstrator during a rally as part of the « Black Lives Issue »
A man wearing a protective face mask walks past a broken shop window in Paris
Asa Traore (center), sister of Adama Traore, who died in police custody in 2016 in Paris
Protesters carry torches as they stand next to a sign reading « Facing Police Brutality – Self-Defense » in Paris
One of them, named only Michael S-C, wrote, “The Trust is right to recognize the great diversity of its members, visitors, and country we live in
“It is not“ political ”to acknowledge inequality in society (BLM or LGBT) after all,“ human well-being ”was one of the pillars of the New Testament
Another member named Piers Ansell wrote: “It has been a great pleasure to see the National Trust an inclusive organization
“It is also positive to see a discussion about some of the less attractive parts of history, especially around slavery and discrimination.”