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Politics Canadian Intolerance - A melting pot's racist streak.

Discussion in 'Breaking News' started by Admin Singh, Sep 14, 2009.

  1. Admin Singh

    Admin Singh
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    This week I had a dim sum lunch at the Empire Mandarin in Richmond, a suburb of Vancouver, Canada: succulent barbecued pork buns, prawn dumplings and crunchy braised bok choy. At noon on a Tuesday amid dozens of tables, my companion and I were the only white faces and the only English speakers; indeed the waitstaff showed no signs of speaking English, though we were able to order using a bilingual form. Up and down the streets surrounding the Empire Mandarin are mini-strip malls also catering to Chinese customers.

    What's wrong with this picture? Nothing, of course, but that's not how some Canadians see it. Another Western Canadian metropolis, the city of Calgary, recently published on its Web site a consultant's report it had commissioned on retail development. Among the high-priced advice--$140,000 from city coffers--was this: "Avoid the development of Asian malls that cater only to a specific ethnic group. Avoid the concentration of ethnically dependent developments in any specific region or node."

    The report had been available online since December, but it appears that no one had read all the way through it until last week, when the Calgary Herald published a story about the report and several other publications picked it up. Outrage ensued. Reasonable questions were asked: Was the city about to ban Chinatowns? Or, say, Ukrainian and Jewish neighborhoods? Would the no-ethnic-enclaves rule apply equally to white, English-speaking neighborhoods? And, on a more practical level, where would one now go for deals on fresh seafood? The city promptly scrubbed the offending lines from the report, then thought better and pulled the whole publication.

    That, though, is not really the end of the story. The kind of thinking behind the report, a mix of plain old-fashioned racism with a penchant for social engineering, pops up all too often in Canada. Paradoxically, Canada takes great pride in its immigrant origins and its diversity, and not just on an official level. Torontonians will tell you with satisfaction that, ethnic origin for ethnic origin, their city is the most diverse in the world. But an ugly streak of thinking is also emerging, as descendants of the Europeans who first appropriated the land balk at the fact that new immigrants don't look and speak and behave just as they do.

    Bruce Allen, for example, a music promoter and member of the committee planning the 2010 Vancouver Olympic ceremonies, ranted on a Vancouver radio station in 2007 that immigrants seeking special treatment in Canada should take off, eh. "If you don't like the rules, hit it. We don't need you here. You have another place to go--it's called home. See ya," he said. Fair enough, if he had been talking about, say, the observance of democracy. But Allen also claimed incorrectly that immigrants with the common Sikh surnames of Singh and Kaur were required by Canadian law to change them. Calling people by their names is apparently too much special treatment of immigrants for him.

    A final example: In 2004 the Richmond Review, of the Vancouver suburb of Richmond, published a story about an Atlanta couple who was treated rudely in a local Chinese restaurant. It received a slew of letters in support of the couple, along the lines of "yes, those Chinese shopkeepers are so rude." One correspondent claimed a Chinese cashier had insulted him in a language he couldn't understand. "I'm appalled at how many signs there are on storefronts where English has a smaller font than the Chinese characters, if there's an English word at all," wrote L. Quest of Richmond.

    As Richmond has become predominately Chinese over the last two decades--more than half of the population of 188,100 is Asian--these kinds of citizen gripes have become common. There have been complaints that Richmond's public high schools are "too Chinese" and suggestions that Richmond should pass a law forcing shop clerks to speak English.

    To be sure, these cavils are just one side of an ongoing argument. But they are the marks of a paranoid and adolescent culture. They create a debate that is pretty much over in truly cosmopolitan cities, where change and the existence of the unfamiliar--before our very eyes--are facts of life regarded as benign, even welcome.

    Ethnic enclaves were once forced to exist in North America. San Francisco's Chinatown emerged because it was the only place the Chinese were allowed to own businesses. Those laws, thankfully, are long gone. But mandating an end to ethnic enclaves is just as misguided. Today's Richmond emerged out of people choosing where and how they wanted to live, and its business owners are freely responding to the market. As likely as not, those businesses will start catering to English speakers when the demand arises. I just hope that as demand shifts, the quality of the pork buns remains intact.
     
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  3. amrit.saggu

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    Quite interesting, I live just a half hour from Richmond, in Coquitlam. We've all been victimized by racism at some level in our life..no matter the race I guess. Bruce Allen..meh, we can't really bother wasting our mental energies on such negative persons. Small mindedness is abundant in this world. I'm planning to pack up my things and leave, the vibe here in Canada is not for me. If God wills I will find a nice and quiet place to settle so I can meditate in peace. The hustle it requires to live in these minimetro's such as richmond, burnaby, surrey, abbotsford is just too much for a mind to be able to stay attune. The universe is unfolding as it should, so I can't really criticize the quality of society, rather I can choose to redirect my path to where I find peace.

    Amrit:up:
     
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  4. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    amar ji

    Where did you plan to go where meditation will work out better for you? Let me know. I might go there too. ;) Heh Heh, better not or everyone will follow you.
     
  5. Randip Singh

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    Some points to note:

    • I am sure the white European ancestors lived in harmony with the native American/Canadian people
    • I am sure these European people respected their language
    • I am sure these European people respected their culture
    • I am sure these European people didn't take over their lands
    • I am sure these European people didn't try to convert them to their ways and religion
    • I am sure these European people didn't .............the list goes on
    ......and maybe pigs fly too. What a bunch of biggoted hypocrits! If they do not like the way Canadian Culture is going they should move back to Europe!;)
     
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  6. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    sadly such misguided bigots exist everywhere..IN Malaysia we are now seeing such arising..after 52 years of "indoctrination" by vested interests that some people are more equal than others..
    The case of the 150 Year old Hindu Temple...long ago when the Britihs ruled this region they had large plantations of Rubber Trees for which they imported Tamil labour from India..these labourers were given pieces of land to erect theri Temples, schools and homes. For Genertaions they kept living in isolation...then Independence came..the British left..the Plantations ahd new owners..the New Rulers of Malaysia..Majority Race Malays who are Muslims...slowly modernisation..urban townships began to take the place of cut down rubber trees...Malays, Chinese, Tamils, Sikhs bought these houses shops apartments etc built on plantation land...and the old Hindu Temples remained..only NOW thye were surrounded by People instead of trees..and some of these people found that these Temples were disturbing their "religious ensitiviites..they couldnt pray with a Temple..a Church..a Buddhist monastery..a SikH Gurdwara nearby...doesnt matter that decades malaysians have prayed in gurdwarss next door to mosques..behind churches and beside temples..everyone did his religious duty and went his way..BUT new breed of Super religious zealots cant have it this way...a mosque in a non muslim majority area is their right...maybe a few mosques too...but a Hindu Temple in a muslim area is taboo..a church in amuslim neighbourhood..is a NO NO..and so malaysia wittnessed a demonstration whereby a group of about 50 muslims carried a severed cows head to the doors of the State secretariat..stomping on it and spitting on it..demanding that a new Hindu temple proposed to be shifted tot heri area is NOT allowed as it would disturb their prayers..everybdy ignored the fact that the Temple has been in place for 150 years..was there first..and its the people who encroached on it first...that stomping on a cow head may be hurting hindu sensitivities..etc etc..simply because hindus are in a minority..and thats BAD !! only a MAJORITY has rights ??:advocate:
    Religious bigotary has no borders..its everywhere we let it grow and flourish..
     
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  7. amrit.saggu

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    if ever I find myself looking at a fellow being with vision tainted by negative emotion I remember bhagat kabir...criticizing another is tantamount to criticizing the creator himself :) kudrat ke sab bandey...god bless!
     
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  8. amrit.saggu

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    if ever I find myself looking at a fellow being with vision tainted by negative emotion I remember bhagat kabir...criticizing another is tantamount to criticizing the creator himself :) kudrat ke sab bandey...god bless!
     
  9. spnadmin

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    The depth and breadth of hatred has no boundaries it would seem. And hatred is hell.
     
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  10. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    Naraynjot Ji..

    and some still beleive Hell is another far away place we will end up in after death...when its right in front of our face...I just saw a UK Guardian Report on How Islamic extremists use the Internet/facebook/chat rooms etc to seek out, hunt down, kidnap , torture and murder..gays, Lesbians etc..scenario..the gay is picked up in achat room..taken away to a safe location, has his a** filled with instsnt glue, his genitals severed..and then shot in the head ( BUT..He is given a chance to PRAY to Allah first so as to purify his blood)..and his purified blood/body is then sent to the parents...so far about 680 peopel have ended up this way in Iraq !!
    Lucky I had hadnt had dinner then..or i would have puked all over my brand new Persian carpet...lost my appetite..that is HELL !!
     
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  11. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    These remind me of Mafia tactics -- but in the name of God. :welcome:
     
  12. faujasingh

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    Gyani ji what do you think about that organisation called HINDRAF . I dunno much of them have just heard about them from friends in Penang.
     
  13. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    Hindraf is the HinduRightsAction Force..and is now BANNED. It was the catalyst to mobilise the Hindus agianst the demolotion of Hindu Temples going on for a long time..and as a result of the swing of the Indian Votes and also the chinese vores agaisnt the long time rulign party, it lost its two thirds majority in the Malaysian Parliament. The Opposition won in Five states...and got 83 MPs in Parliament when previously they ahd only about 30.

    I personally am gainst RACIST Organsiations...those that ONLY fight for their OWN. Malaysia so far ahs been run by Parties that run on RACE..United malays National Org for Malays, MCa for Chines, MIC for Indians etc...but the Opposition is from Multiracial parties..and there is hope we will turn away from RACE and go for One Malaysia..based on Merit...but old habits die hard...those dependnat on the RACE CARD..continue to play it...hence the cow head protest...
     
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