Youth Speaks Dry Run – 20 February 2018

Ayr Rotary club is sponsoring a team from Carrick Academy in the District stage (seniors) of the annual Youth Speaks competition.  We were treated to an entertaining presentation on “The Value of Remembering History” by the three-member team from the Academy. Original team members Robbie Paterson and Scott Anderson were joined by Chloe Cairns, a very brave late stand-in, who introduced the presentation.

In a confident and robust delivery, Robbie amused and educated the audience in the conflicting views of the ancient philosophers on the importance and usefulness of history. After rubbishing Henry Ford’s claim that “History is bunk”, Robbie tried to persuade us that history lay at the heart and soul of all cultures and that we should learn from history by using great ideas from the past to forge our successful futures. It is important for strong cultural identity to understand our past. Robbie bemoaned the fact that the number of school pupils opting for history as a subject had fallen considerably in recent years. In an aside, he ventured that educated appreciation of Scottish culture was perhaps being obscured by less-well considered popular history (e.g. the romanticisation of Robert Burns!!!!). Robbie then expertly fielded the question from the floor “Is it right for historical figures (e.g Cecil Rhodes) to be judged by the standards of the past?”

Scott did the summing-up, advising that whilst it was important to remember history, it was equally important to make your own.

Alistair Tyre congratulated the team on their delivery and wished them luck in the forthcoming District event.