“The stark divide between mainstream Australians and the those who seek to use identity politics as a vehicle to divide Australians has been made clear yet again with a new poll finding a majority does not want Captain Cook statues taken down,” said Dr Bella d’Abrera, Director of the Foundations of Western Civilisation Program at the Institute of Public Affairs.
A poll of 1,014 Australians was commissioned by the IPA and undertaken by marketing research firm Dynata between 17-18 June 2019. It asked Australians to agree or disagree with the statement “There should be no statues of Captain Cook in public”. The results were:
- 15% agree
- 28% neither agree nor disagree
- 57% disagree
“Captain James Cook should be held up in the historical and political context of the 18th Century, rather than judging him using the unattainable, politically correct standards of 2020,” said Dr d’Abrera.
“When activists attack Cook, they are attacking the Australian values Cook represents, and the British institutions such as our liberal democracy, freedom of speech and the rule of law that has contributed so positively to the Australian way of life.”
“The HMS Endeavour was neither a juggernaut of death, nor was Captain Cook a mass murderer. The problem is that censorious academics and activists do not care about historical facts or truth. They have a narrative, and they are sticking to it.”
“Noisy fringe activists should not be the moral arbiters of right and wrong, or of historical facts.”
“Attributing genocide to the son of a Scottish farmer is both historically inaccurate and morally wrong, and we need to set it right.”
“Captain Cook must be defended against this current attempt to ‘cancel’ him. He was an outstanding individual who believed in reason, progress, and knowledge,” said Dr d’Abrera.
Download the polling research.