This post is a response to the unbelievably biased, hate-mongering articles written to paint Black people and their fight out of oppression in bad light. I happened across an article in the Toronto Star and read another one in the Globe and Mail just for good measure. These middle-aged Caucasian women who feel they have a right to cast an opinion on the Black struggle, whilst pretending to sympathize with the LGBTQI community have tried to discredit, shame and destroy the movement, as is par for the course when dealing with the White Opinion.
As a Black female who has marched in the Pride Parades in Toronto, and spent many weekend nights on Church St, I would like you to listen to what I have to say. Margaret Wente of the Globe and Mail is trying to say be thankful, Black citizens of Toronto, that you live here and not Ferguson or the Phillipines. Because she deeply understands our plight and all, living I imagine in Parkdale? Weston Road and Eglinton? No, she does not live there, I assume, probably in a lighter part of town, Yonge and Eglinton? The suburbs North of Steeles?
And even if you lived in Parkdale, Wente, did you know that McCormick Park and Sorauren Park is lily white and dominated by Caucasian homeowners? While the little plastic playground outside the dilapidated apartment buildings filled with bedbugs and mice on West Lodge Ave is where the Black children play, no green space and right beside the parking lot.
What about the prison system in Canada? You say Toronto is not like Ferguson, but it’s ironic our prison system mirrors the American prison industry dealing in Black bodies, with prisons in rural parts of Ontario to help provide jobs to the poor white man. You say racism is basically a non issue, while barely unable to keep your own white privilege and prejudice in check. “Noisy” and “belligerent” is what you describe Black protestors, “passionate” and “determined” could have been used to describe a people who are fed up with living in a city full of racial disparity, in a city that benefits from white supremacy as much as our beleaguered cities in the States.
Furthermore, the only point I agree with these privileged White women who like Black people exactly where they are (far from them), is that the BLM doesn’t belong in Pride. Pride is a White event. You have homosexual people of all races, and traditionally Black people are relegated to Blockarama. Even at the clubs, there are only two Black transgendered performers. At Family Pride, where I take my son, we were one of only 3 Black families amidst a sea of white faces. The Black community and the LGBTQI community need to come together to fight white supremacy which is heteronormative, sexist, and racist. But don’t preach to the White masses. They are bent on misunderstanding us.
Instead, take your time and determination to preach that Black Lives Matter to those who need to hear it most, like Jesse Williams did. We have an unconscious city that needs awakening and organizing. We cannot go to these White events and victimize ourselves. We must go to our brothers and organize But Black rallies, and organize to put Ourstory in our schools (not just European history and the twisted worldviews they possess). We must not convince them to hire us. We must create jobs ourselves and our communities.
Wente and these other journalists who are enjoying the fruits of white domination will never sing our praises. And, that’s unimportant. What’s important is that the Black community in Toronto keeps fighting and works together to dismantle the racial hierarchy and domination that makes us more American than we think. When we had a Black Power Movement in the 1960s, white anxiety and hatred led to a Canadian version of COINTELPRO called PROFUNC that successfully dismantled a rising Black nation via the RCMP and police. Nothing has changed since then. Don’t let these slithery, prejudiced journalists fool you. We have much work to do.