Quote: Originally Posted by MarkMayner
I personally have not noticed this racism, but I guess being the majority I wouldn't.
Defending Alberta though, all places generally have racism. The difference is some places "the east" have hidden racism which can be just as bad.
I guess Albertas might just be more straight-forward.
Excellent observation, MarkMayner. As a "minority" member myself, I and my friends have been on the receiving end of discrimination -- from one end of the spectrum (physical attack) to the other (innuendo).
Alberta is certainly more forthright in its expression of intolerance than many other places I have observed first hand. In some ways it's actually easier to deal with ... if someone comes right out and disrespects me, I can at least defend against the attack. If the denigration is subtle, it's a whole lot tougher to address. It's a little scary, though, to know my next door neighbours wish me harm. And me without my pistol!
Love those gun laws.
The climate in the whole of Canada is shifting but it glacially slow. The process of change does leave a mess in its wake, but I still think we're ahead of the game when it comes to making a move toward equality. You gotta remember that women have only had the vote since 1929 ... it's less than a century that we've been deemed real people. In terms of social change, though, the progress has been really quite quick. Let's hope the same trend continues for the rest of the minorities.
As a minority, I learned quickly that if I wanted to keep my own sanity intact I needed to find ways to counter the insidious forms of discrimination. Asking someone outright what they mean by comments like "those people" or whatever slight is presented, puts the insulter in the position of having to either admit bigotry or rescind the insult. Luckily for me, I have no problem being forthright but not everyone is as comfortable confronting the issue.
On the issue of racism (or any form of bigotry, for that matter) I have observed that we are ALL guilty to some degree. I don't think any single group invented it ... I think it's part of our human nature. By any definition, humans are predators. Predators have an ingrained desire to cull from their ranks anyone who is in any way different. Look at albino animals ... other animals of the same species will attack and kill it for being different. The trick, in my opinion, is for us to overcome that remaining vestige living in our reptillian brain stems. To rise above our very nature. It's what sets us apart from the rest of the animals.
Cdn_bc_ca posed an interesting question: So my question is, when does an immigrant stop being an immigrant or are they immgrants forever?
IMHO, one stops being an immigrant when one adopts the customs and way of life of their chosen country. That does not mean forgetting ones roots ... I am of Romanian Gypsy stock, and love my birth heritage. But first I am Canadian and my loyalty is to my country. When I choose to live within another culture, it is my job to adjust to their ways, not that culture's job to adjust to accommodate me. In my limited travels, I have gone out of my way to respect the mores and values of the place I am visiting. Because I am secure in who I am, that in no way changes or damages my view of myself.
I think an immigrant becomes a true Canadian when their loyalty for Canada is greater than their loyalty to their country of origin. That does not mean one cannot embrace their roots, only that if push came to shove, we have to see ourselves as Canadians first and immigrants second. If Canada went to war with Romania, my loyalty would be with Canada, despite the fact I still have relatives living in Romania. That in no way diminishes the pride I take in my heritage. It's just about being clear where loyalties lie. I think it's an inside job ... we all stop being immigrants or outsiders the moment we decide we belong here.