Wheaton College plaque referring to ‘savages’ removed: ‘Language changes’

A plaque at Wheaton College that referred to Indigenous people as “savages” has been removed after students and staff expressed concern about the language, according to a letter to students and staff from the college’s president.

The 64-year-old plaque commemorated five missionaries slain in Ecuador, including three who were alumni of the DuPage County Christian liberal arts college. School officials are looking to replace the plaque, and a task force will review potential new wording, college President Philip Ryken said in the letter.

“The word ‘savage’ is regarded as pejorative and has been used historically to dehumanize and mistreat Indigenous peoples around the world,” he wrote. “Any descriptions on our campus of people or people groups should reflect the full dignity of human beings made in the image of God.”

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