It is time, time to honour the children.
Calling Out Canadian Online Ugly
I am awake, I am alive, as I ease myself back into the ugliness after a blissful day away. And I do have to acknowledge, it is ugly.
Online (where so many of us still live and work these days), one too many white Canadians hellbent to disprove the reality that is unmarked graves. They struggle with this challenge to the lily-white history of this country they have been sold, never once realizing their denial is inflicting even more pain on those that have suffered enough.
And then there are those who wish to show off their knowledge, listing in comments this atrocity and that, again never once realizing what they are doing to the Indigenous who read their words (or do they not think Indigenous read comments on the internet? Did they think their viewership only white? Perhaps some unpacking required there.)
One too many excusing the deaths of children – chalking it up to disease or childhood injury, not once acknowledging the institution that created the environment to spread disease, an environment that did nothing to nurture or keep children safe, an environment directly responsible for these children’s deaths. And did I need to remind you again – unmarked graves?
From this point forward, if you have learned nothing else, please learn to think of those reading your words. If you truly want to be part of the solution, stop inflicting pain. Stop excusing pain.
Non-Indigenous – it is time for you to carry this burden, this history, in silence as we have done for decade after decade. Indigenous were victimized and then sent out into the world with no support to deal with the ghosts, the aftermath, the ptsd resulting from those horrors. And those are the ones who made it home, often without any knowledge of what happened to their sibling, their friend, their cousin … the ones discovered years later in unmarked graves.
In closing, if you cannot now find empathy for those children, for those families, if you cannot put their pain above your confusion – let me be the first to tell you, YOU are the problem. And you need to fix that.
I will be over here, watching my words, praying and supporting those so desperately trying to heal in a country that in so many ways is still so ugly.
We need to do better. We need to be better.
I love you.