Racism, Canadian style

I understand this had made international news. Colton Boushie, an indigenous man, was shot by a farmer when a car he was in drove into the farmyard. Farmer was found not guilty at trial. The evidence was controversially presentef an all white jury acquitted. RCMP found to have treated the family aggressively and were racist. This is about 100km from me. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatoon/colten-boushie-rcmp-shooting-complaint-gerald-stanley-1.5934802

Our racism is different only in that it's about different brown people.

Comments

  • I completely agree about our racism. Is there something in particular you were hoping we'd discuss?
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    From what I've seen, Canada has fewer politicians, at least at the federal and provincial levels, who engage in the kind of co-ordinated race-baiting you see from US Republicans these days. Hard to imagine even a Conservative publically mocking a non-anglo politician's name, as that guy from Georgia did against Kamala Harris during the recent campaign.

    Now, to what degree this reflects less racism on the ground, is another question. Health and economic statistics for First Nations are, in general, at least as bad as for African Americans, just for starters, eg. they are majorly overrepresented in prisons and among the homeless.

    And among hoi poloi, anti-FN comments can be as vicious as anything I've heard directed against African Americans.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    edited March 23
    Apart from the historic, structural inequality in the backstory, nothing in that or the trial is racist is it. The RCMP behaviour on the ground was a tad robust.
  • Though the situation is different, there appear to be a lot of parallels with institutional racism in other police forces, in particular the Macpherson report on the investigation into the murder of Stephen Lawrence. Macpherson defined institutional racism as "The collective failure of an organization to provide an appropriate and professional service to people because of their colour, culture, or ethnic origin. It can be seen or detected in processes, attitudes and behaviour that amount to discrimination through prejudice, ignorance, thoughtlessness, and racist stereotyping which disadvantage minority ethnic people."
  • orfeoorfeo Shipmate
    I understand this had made international news. Colton Boushie, an indigenous man, was shot by a farmer when a car he was in drove into the farmyard. Farmer was found not guilty at trial. The evidence was controversially presentef an all white jury acquitted. RCMP found to have treated the family aggressively and were racist. This is about 100km from me. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatoon/colten-boushie-rcmp-shooting-complaint-gerald-stanley-1.5934802

    Our racism is different only in that it's about different brown people.

    The description in the article of what the RCMP did wrong has little to do with the not guilty verdict or the skin colour of the jury. But don't let that stop you.
  • Simon ToadSimon Toad Shipmate
    stetson wrote: »
    From what I've seen, Canada has fewer politicians, at least at the federal and provincial levels, who engage in the kind of co-ordinated race-baiting you see from US Republicans these days. Hard to imagine even a Conservative publically mocking a non-anglo politician's name, as that guy from Georgia did against Kamala Harris during the recent campaign.

    Now, to what degree this reflects less racism on the ground, is another question. Health and economic statistics for First Nations are, in general, at least as bad as for African Americans, just for starters, eg. they are majorly overrepresented in prisons and among the homeless.

    And among hoi poloi, anti-FN comments can be as vicious as anything I've heard directed against African Americans.

    I can't comment about the US, but we have politicians who are just as bad. The difference is only that our major conservative party has only viewed it as expedient to vilify refugees and asylum seekers most of the time. That's been sufficient to keep them in Govt for a decade, and for all but six of the last twenty-four years. I think an appeal to anti-asian, muslim and african immigration would be quite popular in this country.

    The big difference between us and the US is the is a high degree of trust in the Govt as an institution that looks after the interests of Australia generally and ordinary people. We don't like our politicians, but we love our public servants and the services they provide.
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    edited March 23
    A few months back, when it was still a bit of a thing for anti-Trump US liberals to fantasize about moving north, a Globe columnist wrote a piece arguing that any Americans who did so would probably be disappointed to find racism in Canada as well.

    The comments section exploded with the kind of reaction you'd expect, ie. a mob of Canadian apologists accusing the author of using exaggeration to advance a false equivalency.

    I had to agree that the column was possibly a little hyperbolic(and IIRC it was not really backed up with statistics). However, a notable aspect of the apologia was how some of the posters themselves were repeating the kind of right-wing talking points popular with Americans who try to underplay racism in their country.

    "Yay, another woke column from the snowflakes at the Globe!"

    "Come on, those nurses in Quebec didn't even mention the race of that woman." (*)

    (*) As a First Nations woman lay dying in a hospital, staff were recorded telling her that she was a burden on taxpayers, and "only good to fuck."
  • From @NOprophet_NØprofit's article:
    "The RCMP's media releases caused anguish for the family. Although they did not contain inaccurate information, these releases could leave the impression that the young man's death was 'deserved' or that possible property offences that might have been committed by the young man's friends were of more concern to police than the young man's death," the commission wrote.

    Are the facts of the case not relevant to painting a picture of what happened? Five young people in an SUV showed up at the farm with intent to commit theft. That's why they were there. If you leave out that bit, then you get left with the implication that a group of young people were out for a drive and turned in to a farmyard by mistake, whereupon the farmer shot them.

    This seems to be an account of the facts in the case.

    UK shipmates will remember the shooting of Fred Barras by Tony Martin, which seems to have a lot of similarities.
  • From @NOprophet_NØprofit's article:
    "The RCMP's media releases caused anguish for the family. Although they did not contain inaccurate information, these releases could leave the impression that the young man's death was 'deserved' or that possible property offences that might have been committed by the young man's friends were of more concern to police than the young man's death," the commission wrote.

    Are the facts of the case not relevant to painting a picture of what happened? Five young people in an SUV showed up at the farm with intent to commit theft. That's why they were there. If you leave out that bit, then you get left with the implication that a group of young people were out for a drive and turned in to a farmyard by mistake, whereupon the farmer shot them.

    This seems to be an account of the facts in the case.

    UK shipmates will remember the shooting of Fred Barras by Tony Martin, which seems to have a lot of similarities.

    The article you linked is 2016. The information it contains about the '5 people showing up in an SUV intending to commit theft' is the very problem the review of the RCMP conduct revealed. The 'intent to commit theft' is the 'he deserved to be shot' spin which originated from the police and ended up in the media, with public discussion at the time of the trial being exactly that. It wasn't true.

    Coupled with the police surrounding the deceased's mother's home, accusing her of being drunk, and telling her "to get it together' as she lost composure, RCMP destruction of notes, allowing the car to be exposed to rain, destroying evidence... The accused was acquitted at trial because his lawyer successfully argued that the unregistered pistol had delayed to fire even though the accused pulled the trigger. All white jury. There isn't a right to shoot trespassers here.

    The provincial gov't followed up with a law to deny access to land without express permission from landowners. Conflicting with First Nations rights to hunt on traditional lands. Denial by white landowners to brown people.


  • As for Canadi
    stetson wrote: »
    From what I've seen, Canada has fewer politicians, at least at the federal and provincial levels, who engage in the kind of co-ordinated race-baiting you see from US Republicans these days. Hard to imagine even a Conservative publically mocking a non-anglo politician's name, as that guy from Georgia did against Kamala Harris during the recent campaign.

    Now, to what degree this reflects less racism on the ground, is another question. Health and economic statistics for First Nations are, in general, at least as bad as for African Americans, just for starters, eg. they are majorly overrepresented in prisons and among the homeless.

    And among hoi poloi, anti-FN comments can be as vicious as anything I've heard directed against African Americans.

    As to co-ordinated race baiting by politicians, let me remind you of the "barbaric practices" snitch line in the dying days of the Harper government whose chief proponents, aside from Harper, were Lisa Raitt and Chris Alexander. I don't think anyone who criticised this was defending FGM, but recognised it for the obvious racial dog whistle that it was.

  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    edited March 23
    @Pangolin Guerre

    Right, but as you say, the "barbaric practices" hotline was a dog-whistle. Harper didn't come right out and say "Call up and report some barbaric muzzies to us."

    Mind you, I guess Senator Perdue didn't come right out and say he was mocking Sen. Harris' name because it was Indian. But anyone who laughed would be hard-pressed to deny that it was the foreignness of the name they were laughing at. Whereas fans of the Cons' snitch line could, at least in theory, make a claim to just being against barbarism of all sorts, not only the foreign variety.
  • Leorning CnihtLeorning Cniht Shipmate
    edited March 23
    The accused was acquitted at trial because his lawyer successfully argued that the unregistered pistol had delayed to fire even though the accused pulled the trigger. All white jury. There isn't a right to shoot trespassers here.

    There isn't one in the UK either. Tony Martin was convicted of murder, although this was dropped to manslaughter on grounds of diminished responsibility on appeal. Martin also had an unlicensed weapon that he wasn't allowed to legally own.

    There was a fair amount of public sympathy for Martin at the time: guy living on his own in an isolated farmhouse, suffers repeated predation from theft & burglary, police are basically useless - a lot of people were asking themselves whether they'd have done any different.

    Also lots of comment at the time about how Barras ended up shot in the back, presumably with Martin's second or third shot, as he was trying to run away. If Barras had been shot in the front, Martin might have successfully argued self-defence.
    The article you linked is 2016. The information it contains about the '5 people showing up in an SUV intending to commit theft' is the very problem the review of the RCMP conduct revealed. The 'intent to commit theft' is the 'he deserved to be shot' spin which originated from the police and ended up in the media, with public discussion at the time of the trial being exactly that. It wasn't true.

    Then what is true?

    The article makes a number of specific factual claims about the behaviour of the people in the SUV - going through a customer's truck, trying to ride an ATV, and so on. Are you saying that those claims are all false? Then perhaps you could tell us what is true, and how you know it to be true.

    What were the events leading up to the young man in question being shot and killed?

  • Did he deserve to be shot if those things are facts?

    This is a short clip (less than 3 mins) about a documentary about his death: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JESsGISXChg . It puts it into context.
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