While the rest of the world pulls down statues of colonial white men, two B.C. legal icons want to restore lustre to the province’s first chief justice and denounce the Law Society of B.C. for tarnishing his image.
Retired B.C. Supreme Court Justice Tom Berger, a giant of Indigenous jurisprudence, and scholar Hamar Foster, University of Victoria professor emeritus, slammed the legal regulator for erasing the legacies of Sir Matthew Begbie.
Three years ago, the law society removed his statue from the foyer of its Vancouver building and eliminated other hallmarks such as the little bronze “Begbies” that honour a “lifetime contribution of the truly exceptional in the legal profession” and changing “Begbie” as the code word used to trigger safety procedures.