Monday, 19 January 2009

People I Would Like to Bury pt.2

You can view the relevant documents relating to CoBDOn’t and their request to get the remains reburied.

What is particularly interesting is they CoBDOn’t did a small survey, mainly focussing on pagans and new-agers and got strong support, however when the museum at Avebury did a similar survey at the museum itself it got precisely the opposite result with very strong support in their favour of maintaining things largely as they are. Their report can be viewed
here, have a look from page 21 onwards where the survey results can be seen, the comments they reproduced from respondents are fascinating; I loved this one:

The first time I brought my son, then aged two, here he looked down at the skeleton, said, “That was a little girl wasn’t it?” and “So she really lived so long, long ago”. Nothing else had such a powerful or positive effect on him.

I think the results tie with what I said in the last post; the public are respectful, the public aren’t gurning fools and the public need this kind of display. The option of having a photograph? as powerful as a photo can be it doesn’t come close to the adrenaline or the heart pounding emotion of seeing something there, in the flesh (or bone) in front of you. A photo takes away the tangibility; it removes the object from you by degrees.

In the draft report, there are a couple of points that are worth mentioning and which I think help flush CoBDOn’t donw the toilet;

The Department for Culture, media and Sport Guidelines state;

‘If individuals can demonstrate a direct and close genealogical link to the human remains, their wishes would generally be given very strong weight. However, consideration should be given as to whether they are the only people in this category and if they are not, whether there was any risk of harm to others in this category if the request being made were granted.’

CoBDOn’t rely on research which suggest that a large proportion of western Europeans are descended from Neolithic ancestors who lived here 1000’s of years ago. They say:

Statistically, these range between 43% and 2%. Women therefore carry our ancestral line from our deep past and into the future. Oxford also state that male DNA traces back through deep time. Until this research is disproved I will assume that members of the Council, like all people indigenous to Europe, have a ‘close genetic’ claim for reburial as stated in the DCMS Guidance.

Horseshit. This also means that any of the rest of us have an equal claim to the remains as CoBDOn’t and as such can request they stay where they are and are not handed over to these ‘extremists’. In order to be effective, CoBDOn’t need to prove the direct link, a close genetic link between themselves and the remains – they need some sort of exclusivity. They do not have it. As the DCMS guidelines state, we as other descendants of Charlie’s family can also have equal claim. It is there in black and white from the government.

Also, DCMS guidelines say:

‘For a community to be recognised and their claim considered it would generally be expected that continuity of belief, customs or language could be demonstrated between the claimants and the community from which the remains originate…

Fortunately CoBDOn’t have not made any claims along these lines. Of course not, they would be bloody idiots to try it – then again, one does wonder.

I urge everyone to read the
CoBDOn’t request It is appalling, full of the kind of mindless horseshit you expect from the fluffiest and poorly educated end of the pagan market.

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