Civil Rights and what’s right
[…] Social construct, racial profiling, psychological effects, stereotypes; genocide: cultural and racial; demeaning; systemic structural racism…
Those are just some of the descriptors used by University of Victoria professor, Dr. Charlotte Loppie, director of the School of Public Health and Social Policy. She was a guest on the September 4 edition of CBC Radio’s Sunday Edition.
Dr. Loppie was speaking on the history of First Nations people in Canada, with particular reference to the murder of Colten Boushie, a 22-year-old Native man who was shot and killed by a Saskatchewan farmer who thought (wrongly, and stereotypically) that Boushie and his friends whose car had a flat tire, and drove onto the farmer’s land to seek help.
The 54-year old farmer has been charged with second-degree murder.
For her part, Professor Loppie was systematically laying bare Canada’s history of racism against its First Nations people, what many describe as “Canada’s intergenerational hidden racism. How, when they arrived European settlers’ desired to dispossess and marginalize them. As colonizers go, their mission was effective.
The aftermath continues to be played out in the 21st century as various Canadian governments continue to rectify the wrongs done to First Nations Peoples.
So as I listened to Dr. Charlotte Loppie, I couldn’t help thinking of Black peoples’ history so far in Canada. Despite the minimal and relative success of some, the marginalization is blatant. All the issues raised in her Sunday Edition interview apply to Black people. We too were native peoples once colonized by Europeans in lands they have colonized with populations they subsequently dehumanized… Africa, New Zealand, Australia, Latin America… and Slavery come to mind.
Apparently, when the news of Colten Boushie’s murder broke, the social media was alive with racist comments about the young man and First Nations people, which were “[…] profoundly disturbing,” according to National Chief Perry Bellegarde.
Apparently, many, hiding in the relatively safe confines of “Online” anonymity, commented that all of Boushie’s colleagues should’ve suffered the same fate. And then there were the numerous and usual clichéd racial… racist epithets. [We hear about them each time another Black male is shot and killed by the police or other-out-of uniform racist.]
Some people called the reaction to Boushie’s killing “sickening… and a symptom of racism in Saskatchewan… and what the reaction to the killing reveals about racism in Canada…”
All the anti-Native vitriol prompted Saskatchewan Premier, Brad Wall, to strongly condemn what he calls “racist and hate-filled” comments on social media and other online forums…”
It’s against that synonymous First Nations backdrop that the Black Lives Matter was spawned, and prompted San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick to take a stand. His action has opened up another debate on his [unpatriotic sit-down…]
Like it or not, Kaepernick was tired of what was happening to Black people, especially males. And given his profile he thought it was incumbent not just on himself, but also countless other high-profile Black public figures, whatever their stations in life, to “stand-up and be counted” (or sit down) to make their voices heard, or allow their actions to speak for themselves. To let America know that a new breed of Black people has been birthed since slavery and that era of heightened Civil Rights activity (the late 50s, 60s and early 70s…).
The state of affairs have become untenable; Black people, the new breed in particular, want to reap the benefits of their distant and more recent ancestors’ sacrifice.
And increasing numbers of low and high profile Black men and women (the killers no longer discriminate as far as gender is concerned).
The new breed has been working hard, “busting my ass”, some say, for their slice of the American pie and are not willing to accept no for an answer.
Check social media, not the mainstream, for a feel for what’s going on. It’s where the real news is happening…
But not all Black people are ready to embrace the new breed. Many names are floated on social media, people like one Charles Barkley, et al, are names that come to mind, spewing their opinions and agenda. They have become good voices and talking heads for the status quo forces. In a sense, distancing themselves from the Black masse.
But as an Online radio/television host recently said, “They better beware of ‘their’ wake-up call…”