Letter to the Thunder Bay Chronicle-Journal
It is most regrettable that your editorial (Understanding after Dismay – 22 February 2008) appears to reflect the same systemic racism that remains very much prevalent in some of our mainstream institutions, those of journalism being no exception. How typical of you to blame the victim – and shame on you for doing so!
The bulk of your comments focus on the admittedly petulant but understandable outburst of a non-elected official of the Anishnabek Nation whose life-long frustration at having being exposed to the likes of the racist nonsense “performed” by these churlish and immature high school girls likely led to the blog comments he posted. You then go on to provide a wider platform for the views of Bruce Woodbeck who went as far as calling the OPP to determine if he could stop the above-noted postings from the official! Good grief, would that Mr. Woodbeck would have called the OPP to determine if it would be appropriate to lay charges against these misguided teenagers. How interesting that he made nary a comment about the racist actions that led to all of this!
Your editorial should have condemned, yes, that is right – condemned, in no uncertain terms the completely unacceptable racist actions of these thoughtless teenagers and called into question the kind of education they have been exposed to that would permit these kind of racist assumptions to grow and fester unchallenged. Or are you going to apologize for that as well?
Perhaps in your reporting and editorializing, you should question your own assumptions and approaches to Aboriginal issues that continue to breed negative and stereotypical characterizations of a Canadian population that has been discriminated against since the days when we appropriated their land, their resources and their children.
Peter Andre Globensky
Thunder Bay, Ontario