“Actually the number is 54.78% of the country who hold beliefs which could be described as racist,” says Dr. Mike Power, of the Concordia School for As A Matter Of Facts, which has recently undertaken a four year study into what racism looks like in a nation of people who co-habitate with elephants, but consider it impolite to discuss the presence of pachyderms.
“But yes, when your friend from high school rails on Facebook that if you think people who want to vet immigrants for Canadian Values are racists, then that makes himself and half of Canada racist, he is coming remarkably close to finding the head of that particular statistical nail with the blind face of his hammer.”
Dr. Power isn’t alone in observing that more than one in two Canadians hold – and on occasion, when the wind is right, and they are surrounded by people who share their skin tone and apparent political leanings, openly espouse – views that are objectively racist.
“Oh shit yeah buddy. You should hear the things my co-workers say when they think the coast is clear,” says 29-year-old Tom Frank, of Oakville, Ontario. “My parents are a little better at hiding it, but to be honest they just use fewer swears when they talk about how Canada doesn’t look the way it used to, while throwing side-eye at the new non-white neighbours, and turning off the news whenever the CBC runs a piece on the aftermath of the Colten Boushie trial.”
Mary Gretel, of Winnipeg, Manitoba, also bears anecdotal evidence that your Facebook friend is inadvertently correct. “I have four kids, and two of them refuse to stop calling Indigenous people ‘Indians.’ And the same two are convinced that we should only be accepting immigrants who can speak english and have their own financial resources. Which is ironic, given that their great-grandparents arrived from war-devastated Germany without knowing a word of that language, or having a penny to their name.”
“Probably the biggest hurdle to dealing with this latent racism, is the fact we don’t like to call it that,” says Dr. Power, casting his eyes over a desk full of newspaper articles, papers, tomes, opuses, and printed tweets; all directed at refuting the possibility that racism is widespread in Canada.
“We doth protest too much,” he sighs. “Look. Many things can be simultaneously true. Canada is a nice nation full of generally genial people. Half of whom are racist.”