The thinnest possible news report from the Times-Colonist says that the BC Government will now use “Haida Gwaii” in all official contexts, rather than “The Queen Charlotte Islands”. Presumably this means it will be changed in the official BC Gazetteer but so far it shows no such change this calendar year. More from the Globe and Mail:
“The change is a very important symbolic gesture,” said Guujaaw, president of the Haida Nation. (Guujaaw goes by one name.) “That’s the land that gave us our life and culture. It’s the proper name.”
Robert Finch, chief executive officer of the Monarchist League of Canada, said he was surprised and disappointed by the B.C. government’s decision. “They assume that they’re doing a good thing, but they’re erasing a very big part of Canada’s heritage.”
I wonder if Robert Finch has even the faintest idea of how clueless he sounds, how arrogant and absurd and, frankly, irrelevant. Maybe if he spent more time thinking about the Crown’s broken promises to aboriginal people he would be less likely to spout such verbal tripe.
Anyway, this will simplify journal articles, where it will no longer be necessary to footnote the name “Queen Charlotte Islands” or refer to “locally known as Haida Gwaii and henceforth referred to thusly”. Meanwhile, enjoy the picture above: coming home through north Juan Perez Sound.
Indeed. He assumes it was named for Charlotte Mecklenburg, the German bride of one of the King Georges. Actually, it was named after the ship of an explorer visiting Haida Gwaii in the 1700’s. The ship was named for the Queen, but the Islands were not. Monarchist League and knee-jerks are synonymous.