Racism and stupidity often seems to go together. I’m a Canadian and I’m appalled at the ignorance of a fellow Canadian woman who kept yelling at a clearly visible Sikh and blaming him for being an extremist Muslim! She did not know that his wearing a turban identified him as a Sikh and NOT a Muslim! She identified herself as Jennifer. Like so many bigots and racists, many just want to scream – and – never to dialogue. To dialogue means to learn and grow! Not this woman!
The vast majority of racists know very little about the object(s) of their hate. Most have never had a meal with a family that is subjected to their vitriol. Most could not locate the countries where ‘immigrants’ have lived. And, the vast majority of racists are also bigots.
I remember in my early teaching days that as kids lined up from the playground, two ITALIAN/CANADIAN BOYS D calling each other “Paki’s.” I took out a five dollar bill and told each of the culprits that they would get five questions – worth a dollar each – on the country of Pakistan.
There were several lines of eager children – some wanting to answer the question. I informed them that I was sure that I would not have to part with one dollar – since, I believed these two boys had no idea of the location or culture of Pakistan. I was right. They could not tell me the countries that bordered on Pakistan, nor its capital, nor the languages spoken, nor the dominant religion, nor the Holy Book of the majority of worshippers.
Now, they were kids. This woman, known as Jennifer, has NO excuses. She is just one ignorant, racist adult who has brought shame on Canada since her loud rantings went viral.
Here is the Story
The woman rants and accuses Mr Jagmeet. Singh (a politician running for office) of ‘being in bed with Muslims and of trying to introduce Sharia Law into Canada. Neither the USA or Canada will ever approve of Sharia Law. The Prime Minister of Canada has stated on NUMEROUS occasions that there is only one form of law in Canada – CANADIAN LAW.
Mr. Singh ignores her and chants that the NDP political party is about love and acceptance.
But some have wondered why Jagmeet Singh didn’t tell the woman that he is Sikh, not Muslim. The MPP addressed that issue directly in a statement released Saturday night.
“Many people have commented that I could have just said I’m not Muslim. In fact, many have clarified that I’m actually Sikh,” he said. “While I’m proud of who I am, I purposely didn’t go down that road because it suggests their hate would be ok if I was Muslim. We all know it’s not.
“I didn’t answer the question because my response to Islamophobia has never been ‘I’m not Muslim.’ It has always been and will be that ‘hate is wrong.'”
Singh said he reacted as he did because he needed to “act fast and set the tone” for the room.
“Once allowed to grow, hate doesn’t pick and choose, it spreads like fire. Once we say it’s ok to hate someone based on their religion, we’re also opening the door to hate based on race, gender, sexuality, and more,” he said. “It’s important that we stand united against all forms of hate.
“It takes love to understand that we’re all in this together. It takes courage to come together, demand better and dream bigger, so that we can build a world where no one is left behind.”
My response to Islamophobia has never been ‘I’m not Muslim.’ It has always been and will be that ‘hate is wrong.’
One of Singh’s rivals, Manitoba MP Niki Ashton, took to Twitter earlier to compliment him for handling the incident with dignity and respect.