The present

I have always felt that there will always be an undercurrent of racist attitudes and this is sparked by events such as the arrival of the Vietnamese “boat people’, the influx of Hong Kong ex-pats etc.  Whenever there is an influx of visible minorities, this sparks a backlash against these persons of color.  I would argue if these immigrants were Swedish or Irish, we would not experience this same level of animosity.

Though the Japanese Canadians have for the most part done well in recovering from the injustices perpetrated on them with the loss of property and possessions, other ethnic groups have not fared as well.  You only need to look south and see the prejudice against immigrants trying to better themselves. You see a rise in hate crimes and killing of defenceless blacks.  You also see an inequity in the criminal justice system where persons of color are sentenced to much harsher penalties versus those applied to Caucasian persons.

It is important to understand history so that we do not repeat these same mistakes.  With the world getting smaller and smaller due to population growth and increased travel, we are all dependent on each other more so than ever.  Racism, injustice and equality are all basic human rights that need to be actively promoted and protected.

This work that we are talking about cannot be done by just the few but we all need to educate ourselves of our combined history and understand the rationale for the actions taken against our community.  We need to participate in educating others and be advocates when we see injustices being perpetrated on other groups because of their ethnicity, religion, sexual preference etc.

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