As a Canadian, I often balk at examples of racism and discrimination so explicit in American politics.In the fallout of Toronto's recent shootings, however, Mayor Rob Ford and Minister Jason Kenney's comments about reviewing "immigration law" (Ford) and "foreign gangsters" (Kenney) are guilty of exactly what members of Mitt Romney's team have done -- attempting to turn certain communities into "others" who are somehow less American or Canadian because they are racial minorities.
Jamil Jivani is a Canadian lawyer and visiting professor at Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is the founder of the Citizen Empowerment Project, a public education organization focused on law and policy issues that impact youth, newcomers and low-income families. Jamil was named the 2015 Young Lawyer of the Year by the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers and delivered an acclaimed TED Talk in 2014 titled "How Racial Profiling Hurts Everyone, including the Police." He is a graduate of Yale Law School, York University and Humber College.
Margaret Wente attributes recent gun violence to broken families and suggests reforms to the Youth Criminal Justice Act as a solution. She is maybe the worst example of those who use cultural explanations in order to call for a tough-on-crime agenda. One would be hard pressed to find an editorial on The Globe and Mail discussing molecular biology by people with no expertise or experience in the issues. We should demand the same respect for complex social problems and cultural issues.
07/18/2012 05:22 EDT
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