We minorities are in this together

10.27.18

More than ever, we need to stop petty squabbling between minority groups, and unite together to fight hatred, xenophobia, and white supremacy. This shit’s only gonna get worse before it gets better. An article in the Forward reminds us that we can’t focus on attacking one another when this is our collective fight:

American Jewish groups like HIAS and Bend the Arc have tirelessly organized in opposition of Trump’s cruel policies targeting refugees. These organizations are drawing on a well-spring of support in the Jewish community. That support exists because most Jews recognize that when minorities are targeted by a white-supremacist friendly administration, it’s not only right to fight back; it’s an imperative because we know Jews will be next.

The right never stops at Muslims or black people. As the Charlottesville rally and now the Pittsburgh shooting show, Jews remain under the deadly threat of white supremacist violence.

This is relevant not just to Americans, but to us Canadians and Quebecers as well. In January 2017, a man walked into a Quebec City mosque and killed six and wounded nineteen people. Today, a man walked into a Pittsburgh synagogue and killed at least 11 and wounded dozens of others. He said he did it in part because of Jewish support for Muslim refugees in general, and for HIAS, a refugee and immigrant aid organization that helps refugees in particular.

Meanwhile, our new premier wants to ban religious symbols and pick a fight with religious minorities, including Jews and Muslims, because he’s appealing to the same white supremacist attitudes: the fear that ‘newcomers’ are ‘taking over’ from the white Christian majority.

These are not unrelated events. We all need to recognize that it’s time to set our differences aside and stand together to fight back against this threat.

Martin Luther King Jr. famously said that “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” It’s time we recognize that the fight for ANY minority rights must be our fight, too. It’s not enough to stand up against antisemitism if we’re not also standing up loudly against injustices and hate against people of colour, other religious minorities, LGBTQ people, immigrants, refugees, First Nations, and anyone else who knows what it feels like to be vulnerable.

Vigils and thoughts and prayers are not enough, as long as people keep voting for parties and policies who appeal to white supremacist right-wing Nazi nutbags to get elected. This shit needs to end now. And the only way that it will is if everyone — majority, minority — conclusively denounces the politics of racism and fear, and rejects any candidate or party that runs on that basis.

ETA 10/29: American Muslim groups raised over $120,000 to support the Jewish victims of the Pittsburgh shooting in under 48 hours. Sometimes, tragedy really does bring out the best in people.

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