Black History Month

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Legacy, Dynasty, And History As A Black-Canadian

My Jamaican Grandparents came to Canada in 1967, just after new immigration laws allowed entry on the basis of a new merit-based points system. My entire life, the Jamaican-Canadian trajectory story from their humble Caribbean beginnings, to the United Kingdom where they met as students, and finally to Canada with their four young children for opportunities they could not afford in Jamaica, has been etched into my conscience as a constant reminder of how far our family has come, to seize the opportunities and carve out the legacy that is now well underway.
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Black Lives Matter Toronto And The Fight For Good PR

I'm not sure who is advising the Black Lives Matter Toronto chapter. Social justice should be about resolving issues that exist and preventing new ones from popping up. Regressive justice and the approach of BLMTO seems to be creating division. They're stepping on others and provoking controversy. Making such outlandish commentary and actions, they become their own worst enemy.
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Telling Your Story Can Change The World

A few years ago I decided to embark on a backpacking trip across Europe for two months. Towards the end of my travels, I found myself at the Sisteen Chapel in Rome, Italy. As I was standing there, enchanted by this insanely crazy masterpiece, I felt a soft whisper perk the tiny hairs on the back of my neck.
Courtesy of blogger

An Inclusive Black History Month Agenda

For so long, popular media has, in a sharp but narrow way equated BHM with "slavery"! So much that new African immigrants to the America's like myself have often struggled with seeing their role in the BHM celebrations. Subsequently, this has led to questions and doubt as to where global Africans fit where BHM is concerned.
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We Can't Keep Denying Systemic Racism In The Canadian Forces

At what point does racism move from isolated incidents to a systemic problem in the Canadian Forces? Master Corporal Marc Frenette is quitting his decades-long service after years of racial harassment. Last May, Corporal Esther Wolki went public over the racial abuse she suffered and the damage it did to her mind. Not even the defence minister is immune from racist attacks. Then there's Private Wallace Fowler. For 16 years he has been trying to get the Forces to properly investigate the racism he says he endured.
Courtesy of George Elliott Clarke

I Never Knew My Father As A Motorcyclist Until I Read His 1959 Diary

The most curious fact about my father's death, on August 31, 2005, at age 70, is that, as soon as it had happened, I knew I would write a novel based on his life. Parents are unavoidable for children, and I am not the first to believe his own to have been both more eccentric and more superb than the billions of other human beings who did not chance to give me life. But my father's life seemed novelistic for another reason: he -- William Lloyd Clarke -- had driven a motorcycle in his early 20s in the later 1950s.
refugee

My Refugee Journey Involves Gunshots, Homelessness and Hope

Over the following months in 2001, the violence continued in Burundi between the rebels and the government. My passion for my work diminished. I no longer felt like doing anything. I even stopped watching the news on TV, or even listening to it on my own radio station. Everything looked hopeless. In 2002, some Canadian journalists visited Burundi. If I were going to ask for help, it was now or never. Six months later, they invited me to visit Canada, and I jumped on the opportunity. I arrived in Canada with $60 in my pocket -- my mother's life savings.
ASSOCIATED PRESS

A Month of Black History Does Not Erase a History of Racism

Over the next few weeks, you will see no shortage of functions organized by historical societies, libraries, and schools dedicated to Black History. You may even catch the corporate giants sponsoring short vignettes on black history, or perhaps a rerun of "Amistad," "Roots" or "Malcolm X." During our school years, we spend months, perhaps years, studying history. Yet, how much importance is given to the history of blacks?
CBC

CBC's Blind Spot in The Book of Negroes

Adapted for the small screen, The Book of Negroes' Canadian debut occurs one month ahead of the U.S.A. premiere, appositely scheduled for Black History Month. As with any historical film depicting the bowels of inhumanity towards people of colour, it is an uneasy subject matter for the mostly lily-white CBC personalities.
Rachel Decoste

This Canadian Stood Up to Racism Before Rosa Parks

In the social context of Canada before the Quiet Revolution (1950s), before Viola Desmond's act of defiance (1946), before Rosa Parks triggered the United States' Civil Rights Movement (1955), Fred Christie stood up to institutional discrimination. A decade before the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1947), Fred Christie exhibited unimaginable courage and perseverance in asserting his civil rights. Though the judicial process did not deliver the desired result, Fred Christie remains a key instigator in Canada's journey towards the establishment of universal rights.
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The Problem With Black History Month

The amazing thing about our country is that we're still young. Compared to other countries we're like barely-legal young. We're still losing our baby teeth, learning how to walk, working out the kinks and growing into our clothes. And from what I see, the core of what Canadian-ness is, is multiculturalism. So I have problem with Black History Month, and the reason is this: I don't believe we should assign one month out of the year (and the shortest month, mind you) to one race. Why? Because although, yes, it brings awareness to the history and celebrates its triumphs, it sets them apart from the norm, reiterating this whole notion of "otherness."
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Black Children Need Better Parents, Not Schools

The Toronto Star and other publications have touted the success of Ontario's Africentric school system. The problem is, one would expect higher test scores and improved behaviour from students who attend such a school, as the program will self-select parents who care more about their children and are engaged in their education. The fact is, as confirmed in countless studies, that the collapse of the black family within a segment of the black community is the primary reason so many of our children fall through the cracks of society, to be broken against the hard, unbending steel of racism, prejudice, failure and depression. No amount of "specialty schools" can change that.