There’s an old Arab quote that roughly translates to “Don’t tell me about a man, tell me about his friends.” i.e, you are the company you keep. In spite of the present efforts for a recount in certain key states, we are still very much bracing for a Trump presidency, and perhaps worse yet, a Trump cabinet. Let’s get to meet our new fascist overlords:
Ambassador to the United Nations: Nikki Haley
Born to Sikh Indian parents, Governor of South Carolina Nikki Haley earned acclaim for her decision to remove the Confederate flag from state grounds. While maintaining a number of hardline positions- especially in terms of immigration- Haley again made headlines with her early criticism of then-candidate Trump. Criticism that earned her calls to be deported.
Deported to exactly where remains a mystery, as Haley was born in America. But as plenty of Trump supporters imagine America to be an inherently white country, they showed no qualms about reminding Haley (and people of color) that their presence in this nation is merely tolerated…
Image retrieved via Policy.Mic
Which makes Trump’s decision to offer her UN ambassadorship surprising, and Haley’s acceptance even more so. But perhaps that’s just to show how much the Republican party has chugged the Kool-Aid. A woman who, simply because of her first name and her skin tone, received calls for her “deportation” is now the international face of the same “siren call of the angriest voices.” Certainly it’s a chilling picture of what’s to come, and enough to silence anyone claiming that the house and senate will somehow act as a counterbalance to Trump’s Fourth Reich. Continue reading
Posted in bizarreness, feminism, gender, government, Islam, lgbt, military, morality, politics, race, religion
Tagged Alt-Right, Attorney General, Betsy DeVos, bigotry, Black Sites, Breitbart, Cheif of Staff, CIA Director, Deport, deportation, Donald Trump, Islamophobia, Jeff Sessions, KKK, Michael Flynn, Mike Pompeo, National Security Advisor, Nikki Haley, race, racism, Reince Priebus, Secretary of Education, South Carolina, Steve Bannon, torture, UN Ambassador, weed, Xenophobia
Canadians like to think that we’re a pretty nice bunch.
Especially now, as Drumpf’s presidential candidacy reveals the racist underbelly of our neighbours to the South, we Canadians pride ourselves on being nothing like the States. We happily disassociate ourselves from the violence and xenophobia that seems to crop up at every Drumpf rally.
It’s just so incredibly convenient to revel in our not-Americanness, as though that in itself makes us not racist. We try to pretend that same kind of racism doesn’t exist here, even though the same fear-baiting tactic was used in our recent election. We try to ignore the recent hateful attack on Syrian refugees, newly arrived in Canada. We try to forget that our country was built upon the exploitation of people of colour.
In case you aren’t sure what I’m referring to, I’ve included a couple examples below.
1. Canada had Legal Slavery
In elementary school the only time I learned about slavery and Canada was when we studied the Underground Railway. Through these stories of escape and hope I, like many Canadians, was led to believe that Canada had offered an escape for Black men and women who were trapped as slaves in the United States.
What I never knew (until recently) was that Canada was not always the beacon of hope that it appeared. As historian Natasha Henry highlights in her article about Slavery in Canada,
“African slavery existed in the colonies of New France and British North America for over 200 years, yet there remains a profound silence in classrooms and teaching resources about Canada’s involvement in the African slave trade. According to available historical documents, least 4,000 Africans were held in bondage for two centuries in the early colonial settlements of New France (Quebec), New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, and Upper Canada (Ontario).”
Luckily, novelists have begun to draw attention to the stories that our history books have overlooked. Afua Cooper’s The Hanging of Angélique, for example, tells the true story of Canadian slave Marie-Joseph Angélique. Meanwhile, Lawrence Hill’s Book of Negros, reminds us that many escaped slaves were actually shipped back to the States by Canadian authorities. He also explores the extreme racism that drove some black Canadians to move to Sierra Leone. Continue reading
Posted in America, Canada, history, politics, race
Tagged Afua Cooper, Anti-asian sentiment, black, Camps, Canada, Canadian, Canadian encycopedia, Canadian Government, caricature, Chinese settlers, Chinese-Canadian, communal, Communist, competition, deportation, Drumpf, economic success, European settlers, Famer, farm, farmer, fishermen, forget, generations, hand tools, Hayter Reed, head tax, Henry Yu, history, hope, imprisoned, Indian Commissioner, indigenous, indigenous communities, inmates, interned, internment, Japanese-Canadian, land, Lawrence Hill, livestock holds, machinary, Natasha Henry, nice, nutritional experiment, Peasant Farming, Policy, pool funds, president, property, railway, remember, reputation, reserves, Residential Schools, Sarah Carter, separated, Sierra Leone, slavery, sold, surplus, Syrian refugees, Taken, The Book of Negros, The Hanging of Angelique, Towards a Pacific History of the Americas, underground railway, Unites States, Violence, vote, west coast, white, white settlers, white supremacy, WWII, Xenophobia
While the tragic terrorist attack on the offices of French satirical paper Charlie Hebdo may be a month behind us, that doesn’t mean that a lot of people aren’t still talking about it. Most recently, one of those people is (quite surprisingly, given his reclusive reputation) famed animator and all around wonderful human being Hayao Miyazaki.
Now if you don’t already know who this guy is, you are a deprived human being. Go watch Spirited Away, seriously. The guy is responsible for some of the most beautiful, creative, and thought-provoking animated films of our age. He also has some great stuff to say about the state of animation in his home country of Japan.
But anyway, Charlie Hebdo. In case you’ve been living under a rock, a quick summary: the aforementioned French satirical paper often featured crude, insulting cartoons mocking various religions, and recently contained a few choice ‘toons about the prophet Muhammad, which then sparked a brutal terrorist attack in which 12 of its staff were killed. Since then, sales of the periodical have skyrocketed, and many have marched in support of Charlie Hebdo under the banner of “Je suis Charlie” (“I am Charlie”). All in all, the victims have been seen as martyrs for “free speech.”
And what does Miyazaki have to say about all of this? Well, basically, that the Charlie Hebdo comics were a “mistake.”
Clearly, this will not sit well with many. But hey, let’s let the man explain.
“For me, I think it’s a mistake to make caricatures of what different cultures worship […] It’s a good idea to stop doing that.”
[via Kotaku‘s translation from Yahoo! News].”
So basically… He wants people to be respectful of the dearly held beliefs of others.
Posted in art, Comedy, Europe, religion
Tagged Charlie Hebdo, comedy, controversy, France, free speech, Hayao Miyazaki, Howl's Moving Castle, Islam, Islamophobia, Je suis Charlie, Miyazaki, My Neighbor Totoro, racism, religion, satire, Spirited Away, terrorism, Xenophobia