My experiences…


Deep breath… I have been reading, processing, and holding space these past few days for all that has been rising to the surface… for all the anger, fear, hopelessness, grief, pain, concern. I read how many friends posted about what they could do since they were not BIPOC, about their white privilege. While those posts are appreciated, I invite all friends to ask their BIPOC friends to share their own experiences.

I am always open to share my experiences… like when I was 5 years old and watched my parents being refused entry in a hotel they had a reservation at in Paris… or being called the ‘n’ word during a soccer game in school… or not being acknowledged by a sales person but when my white friend walked in a few minutes later she was acknowledged… of being asked – more than once – “where are you from” and the surprised look when I say ‘Antigonish’… or when I first moved to Halifax, patients asking the receptionist if I spoke English well…. It’s also in how someone called my Indian outfit a “costume”, or someone else saying they don’t see ‘colour’ when they see me.

Racism, and its close relatives – prejudice, colour-ism, discrimination, privilege, homophobia, misogy, cultural appropriation – are not new…. they are everywhere and always have been. But the light is shining so brightly on these now, we can no longer look away.

Being BIPOC is not the issue… the issue is racism… the issue is that racism is encouraged… the issue is that people have turned a blind eye or tongue towards it. We need to change the narrative… change the story. I love the colour of my skin… I love my culture. I also recognize and know my own privilege.

The words you all post are appreciated but will you stand by me? Will you stand with me? Will you speak up when I say that something has happened and call it for what it is instead of saying nothing? Will you become part of the solution?