Racism Is Prevalent In Canadian Society

by lizzfowler on October 1, 2014 - 8:49pm


In the article Racism Is Canada’s Problem, Too-Let’s Talk about It, Craig and Marc Keilburger, written on September 18th 2014 for The Huffington Post, talk about the various ways that Canada, as a multicultural society, is still not done with its racist ideologies. They give various examples of these instances, including how Canada’s Minister of State fir Multiculturalism was thrown angry racial slurs from a woman just because he is Sikh and happened to be in the same tennis club as her. She went on to say that he was probably unemployed, which is a completely rude and uncalled for comment from someone who has no proof on such matters.  The authors also go on to explain how people are trying to abolish the still prevalent racism in Canada. They explain how a school teacher found a drawing of a swastika is a student’s notebook, and instead of reporting him, he took a different approach. He explained to him what the symbol meant, and years later that teacher got a Facebook message from the same student, thanking him for helping to prevent him from going down a path he ultimately didn’t want to. They end the article saying that Canadians are proud of their diverse nation, but it does not make up for the racism and discrimination that is still present in today’s society, but that fixing the problem starts with talking about it.


My opinion on this article is that I could not agree more- racism is still noticeable in today’s society. There aren’t as many racist institutions, and on paper everyone has the exact same rights, but all you have to do is open your eyes and ears and pay attention to how people are treating minorities to know that people are still prejudiced. Members of my own family think that they are so entitled that they talk about how immigrants are ‘taking the jobs of Canadians’. This never struck me as unusual, I thought it was the norm before I started to educate myself on the topic. I used to think that I, as a white person born in Canada, deserved something more than those who are not white and perhaps immigrated from a different country. It was not such a direct thing in my head that “white people deserve jobs more than non-white immigrants”, and I am not even sure if I knew that that is what I was thinking. I know now that this is NOT the sort of idea to have and it IS a racist ideology. I think Craig and Marc Keilburger hit the nail on the head when they said that we as Canadian need to start addressing these small instances of individual racism in our society. The only way it can change is if we speak up, educate ourselves, and try to change our ways.


Hello, I am posting this comment because I really appreciated your opinion about immigrants and jobs in Canada. As an immigrant, your post makes me feel hopeful that maybe one day, if everyone is educated like you, my parents, my sister and I can live more easily in this country. We have often felt like we were treated unfairly many times because people thought that we came here to steal their jobs. So the fact that you, a white Canadian, understand us really brings me some sort of comfort.
As you said, you thought that we came to steal your jobs only because your own family kept seeing it that way. I am certain that they themselves do not believe that they are being racist. They probably are simply frustrated at the way immigrants seem to be flooding the job market these. Please keep this in mind and do not develop a negative perception of them on our account. Instead, I would appreciate if you tried to patiently make a case for us. Tell them that we do realise it is a bit hard for them to accept us because we look different. It is not just them. In my birth country, a place where people are an Indian majority, the people tend to be racist towards Black and Arab people. One reason: they do not look like the rest of us.
But I think that it is up to us, the minority, to keep compassion in our hearts and understand that people do not believe they are racist since everyone knows it is wrong to be racist. Reasons like “they probably have inheritance in their own country so why do they come to steal our money?” or “this is our country but why do I see less and less of our own people every day?” could be used to lie to oneself and this is probably what your family does. Try to understand them and try to make them see with solid facts (e.g.: genetic similarities between “races”, the fact that we are all Homo sapiens from Africa who just happened to go separate ways, etc.) that we are not so different from one another. If you use a lot of impressive science facts, they will be inclined to believe you and they might even rethink their positions on racism.
In conclusion, do not be negative towards anyone because they are racist. It is only a matter of a smart argument to change someone’s mind. Believe me, it has worked for me countless times and I am proud to say that my parents become less prejudiced every day. Also, I want you to think about whether or not you truly believe in race or do you agree with me that maybe the word “race” is better in between inverted brackets?

Your title is what caught my attention because there are many people who believe that racism and discrimination don't exist in today's society, when that is false. It's all around us, but it's only people of colour who personally experience it. I liked how you spoke about the "immigrants stealing all your jobs" issue because essentially that's what most white-Canadians think and the fact that you thought that you deserved more simply because you are white. That's racism right there and it's quit amazing how no one seems to think that putting yourself above a minority group doesn't somehow make you racist. I like that you educated yourself on the subject and that you learned the importance of how minorities are treated. It kind of gives me hope that there might be more people like you who are willing to educate themselves when they need to be. But wouldn't it be easier if parents and grandparents weren't racist? That's how racism comes to be. In your case, you went on from what your parents have told you, have led you to believe. If our elders weren't racist and weren't so quick to discriminate, we might just live in a society that isn't plagued with such hatred towards groups with different skin colours. I agree with your last statement. We do need to change if we want to see a change, that goes unsaid, but are white people willing to sacrifice the privileges they have for minorities?