Canada's race problem? It's even worse than America's.

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Canada's race problem? It's even worse than America's.


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Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Yes. And I contend that it's worst in the prairie provinces.


The racism I saw when living in Sask was brutal, yeah. Indigenous people are so visible in the prairies. And so invisible in much of the rest of Canada. 

Canada has a race problem.


It most certainly does, and a shameful one. All America (or the Americas) as well. I'd be hard put to say that it is "worse", as there was more systemic extermination of Indigenous peoples south of the border. Not because what would become Canada was any nicer, but because there was less demographic pressure.

And the legacy of the enslavement of Africans is HUGE in the US, and in some other American countries such as Brazil, and in other ways, even in Caribbean countries with Black majorities.

It isn't a competition. Racism must be fought everywhere.





Timebandit wrote:
Yes. And I contend that it's worst in the prairie provinces.

Different, I'd say. More visible, certainly. But it is easy to pretend there is less of a problem in places where people are simply invisible.

Of course the prairies are going to be the most obvious because this place is on the front line of anti-aboriginal racism. But this is also the place that is on the front line of change (perhaps second only to Canada's north).

I don't point this out as a defense of the prairies, but rather as a reminder to other places, particularly other urban places, where people think they are doing so much better.



Well, I think what Timebandit has seen daily is mostly urban racism against Indigenous people, in two Prairie cities.

It is true that it is more "invisible" here in Québec for example because both mainstream francophones and Indigenous populations are métissé to quite a degree, but it isn't because many Québécois have some degree of Indigenous ancestry (which is even more the case in other Latin-speaking nations south of the US) that they can't be horribly racist; I noted that when I was living in northern Lac-St-Jean, where some men with distinctive Innu features were badmouthing the people on the nearby reserve who "had it good".

In some ways attitudes are changing and there has been great support here to Idle No More, especially as that emerged here in the wake of the 2012 student movement, and to Indigenous struggles against pipelines and other polluting enterprises, but there is still far too much denial.


I am not downplaying what she said, because I agree that it is a bad problem. I live in Saskatoon. I grew up in Winnipeg, and I have lived in Regina.I have lived in rural areas of Manitoba as well. And I have spent time on a real front line - between the edge of  Cardston AB and the Blood FN.

What I am talking about is when I moved to Vancouver and noticed that (for white people anyway) the issue became invisible unless you cared to pay attention to it. People here don't have that luxury.

And I hear what you are saying about some people who should know better playing into that racism. And after what I wrote I remembered Oka. Again, I don't think the important issue is who is closer to the bottom, because this shows up in very different ways depending on where you live. It is different even between Winnipeg and here in Saskatoon. That doesn't just apply to anti-aboriginal racism, but anti-semitism, racism against immigrants from the early 20th century, and those who are coming now.


alan smithee alan smithee's picture

This maniac needs to be stopped immediately.

We don't need a Canadian Trump. My guess is this will resonate in the redneck Prairies.


Perhaps but Southern Ontario gave her legitimacy by sending her to the commons.

Besides, we have our own candidates in Brad Trost and Andreww Scheer.



alan smithee alan smithee's picture

I like how Leitch came out saying 'I'm not a racist' Famous last words of a bigot. I read that a lot of high profile donors have pulled their support from her. I can only hope that that cripples her hopes.


i keep hoping that leitch and the other leadership candidates return to their parties historic glass ceiling breaking ways. she is seeking to lead the party that introduced teh bill of rights, the party  of the first female cabinet minister, first african canadian mp and first african canadian cabinet minister.   maybe just maybe one of the 13 candidates will grab that mantel again and help combat racism like thier party historically did. 


And the party of the first Indigenous Senator, for that matter, the one that first extende fhte vote to First Nations. But if they brought Diefenbaker back today, he'd be called a "socialist" and maybe thrown out of the party. 

lagatta wrote:

It isn't a competition. Racism must be fought everywhere.

Agreed, of course. These stats are just an important puncturing of Canadian smugness, and proof that we need to do better. 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

I believe the stats in the US show that their indigenous population is the most discriminated against as well. Settler cultures are hardest on the people they steal the land from. Just ask the Palestinians.


Project Sitka Report

'These people threaten the very foundations Canada rests upon.' BC RCMP Media Liason Officer Peter Montague on Indigenous Protesters at Gustafsen Lake, 1995.



I bet that most Canadians followed political news in the United States more closely in 2016 than we monitored officials in our own country. Donald Trump’s odyssey of hatred and deception played well in Canada, especially because it fed our habit of painting our political reality as divine by comparison.

Canada’s politicians and public officials failed countless times in 2016 to stand against oppression, remove barriers to inequality, and uplift people in this country who have been forgotten. I get it — Americans elected Donald Trump. But he and his country can never serve as the standard for our conduct. In our national anthem we pray that God keeps our land glorious and free, even though it hasn’t been either of those things in recent memory. Things didn’t get much better in 2016.

In January, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ruled that the federal government has been racially discriminating against indigenous children who live on reserves. The tribunal ruled that these indigenous children — 163,000 of them — receive significantly less funding for child welfare services than nonindigenous kids do. This shortfall has existed since Confederation.

Prime Minister Tustin Trudeau and his Liberal government have ignored the tribunal and its restatements of the ruling for the full calendar year.

[url= True North enjoys comparing itself to the troubled U.S. but for many groups, such as indigenous people, blacks and Muslims, there is little to celebrate here in 2016[/url]


I mentioned something similar here in terms of underfunding for women's shelters on reserve (these shelters also house the children of battered spouses) some years ago, as I was doing translations and interpreting on that very topic. It was quite a discrepancy: much LESS for such services and shelters on reserve, although the dire social situation in many Indigenous communties is no secret. And this still hasn't changed.

The education system on reserves and Inuit villages, and the state of schools in urban areas with a high percentage of Indigenous residents, is a disaster as well.

Yes, comparing one's elected officials to Trump is sort of like comparing one's Social Development Index to that of the poorest nations in the Americas...