A portion of a response I submitted to a questionnaire was printed in the previous issue of the Independent. A phrase in that submission was inartful, lacked sensitivity, and was therefore incorrect to use.
I used the figurative term “circle the wagons.” The idiomatic meaning of this term refers to a uniting in defense of a common interest. But it also has a historical context based on the old western scenario of Anglo settlers invading native territories in wagon trains and drawing their wagons in circles to defend themselves and their livestock and belongings from those seeking to repel the invasion.
I apologize for this error.