We mark days to celebrate and commemorate certain people because their plight isn’t worthy enough to be resolved, just to be remembered.It’s a way of brushing our problems under the rug and wait till next year to sweep it all up again.
This past weekend we hosted days to bring attention to refugees (Sat June 20) and Aboriginal people (Sun June 21). In running errands with my uncle, I picked up the front star of the Toronto Star to find a story of a refugee, Abdurahman Ibrahim Hassan, who died while in police custody. It brought to memory the fresh wounds left from the death of Freddy Gray in Baltimore. My thoughts then jumped to the ongoing conversations about the murder of 9 people in Charleston, South Carolina and the heated conversations about how racism and hatred continues to escalate the tensions in our society. I then went back to trying to digest how [60 million people](www.nytimes.com/2015/06/18/world/60-million-people-fleeing-chaotic-lands-un-says.html) had been displaced in 2014 and imagine the catastrophe we will have by the end of this century (by which time I will not be alive) as people are forced to leave their homes due to war, epidemics, disasters, and other events induced by climate change impacts. When entire lands will be submerged and people flee on boats.
Another link leads me to a Human Rights Watch update on how a Sharia court in Malaysia just convicted 9 transgender women because “a male person posing as a woman” is not acceptable. There’s a follow up link discussing homophobia in Russia which I regret clicking because it provides graphic blurred proof how the LGBTQ community faces violence. Few hours ago, I was browsing through photos of banners being painted for a pride march.
Today, National Aboriginals Day in Canada, we are supposed to celebrate “the unique heritage, diverse cultures, and outstanding achievements of the nation’s Aboriginal peoples. the unique heritage, diverse cultures, and outstanding achievements of the nation’s Aboriginal peoples.” However, with the release of the Truth and Reconciliation report, it has become hard to defy the horrible violence we committed against them and the “cultural genocide” we are responsible for. If we are being honest, we would label it “regular genocide” John Lorinc’s book “The New City” exposes the high level of urban Aboriginals who are homeless in urban cities and become disproportionately susceptible to drug abuse and gang violence. Let’s not forget our failure in adequately responding to the crisis of murdered and missing indigenous women in Canada.
With all the violence, homophobia, Islamophobia, racism, and hatred, I am lost trying to figure out where to channel my frustration. I get overwhelmed and go to sleep to attempt to recalibrate myself.