14 Oct 2017

The Brain-Washing Starts Early

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Even a Canadian Progressive like Tama Ward can be made a little uncomfortable with the role of Post-Colonial Parent.

At breakfast, in the glass-towered city of Vancouver, five-year-old Abigail looks glumly at her half-eaten bowl of cereal.

“What is it, honey?” I brush the bangs back from her face.

She lets out a big sigh. “I wish I wasn’t white.”

I start. Nothing in the parenting manuals has prepared me for that.

“All we’ve ever done is hurt people,” she continues. “I wish my skin was dark and that I had a culture.”

We live in a part of the city where immigrant families abound. Our neighbours are homesick, first-generation Mexicans, which means that salsas and pinatas and Aztec legends feature prominently at shared social gatherings. Our family regularly eats in Little India where we gush over the flavours of curry and dhal, and every February, we attend the Chinese New Year parade in the slanting rain. Plus, my husband and I are children of missionaries and harbour an acute guilt for the cultural imperialism of our forebears. To compensate, we’ve raised our children with a deep appreciation of non-Western cultures.

So when Abigail laments the colour of her white skin, part of me is programmed to protest. Is it not my moral obligation to tell her that her feelings of poor self-worth are nothing compared with the psychological ruin of real racism? Girl, everything about Canadian culture weighs in your advantage and you have no right to snivel!

Instead, I feel a sadness settle over me. We thought we were raising the enlightened child of the 21st century. We thought we were doing our part in setting the history record straight. Yet, in doing so, it seems we have robbed our oldest child of something primal to psychological health, something elemental to her well-being as a human being: cultural roots.

I don’t know what to say.

I consider the you-are-Canadian spiel: “part of a new society made up of the vibrancy of many cultures, etc.” Yet, “Canadian” is precisely the problem. What is Canadian? Her best friend is Canadian and Mexican. Her cousin, Canadian and Bengali. Even our Indigenous neighbours have a First Nation before they have Canada. To play the Canadian card will further neuter her culturally when what she’s looking for are deep roots that ground her to a people and place.

Seized by maternal panic I go in search of our oversized National Geographic Atlas and hoist it up onto the breakfast table. Abigail sits up and she leans in. “It was almost 200 years ago that your people came to Canada from this island.”

Abigail’s face brightens at that word: island. I know what she’s thinking. Islands are places of primal innocence and cultural distinctiveness, such as Haida Gwaii or Never Never Land.

But then when I speak the name of her island, Abigail’s full-body slump returns.

“Great Britain?!” she pouts accusingly. “Aren’t they the bad ones?”

RTWT

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6 Feedbacks on "The Brain-Washing Starts Early"

Dick the Butcher

Was it racist writing “slanting rain” about Chinese New Year?

Hey, do us all a favor.

You believe you are guilty of everything. Kill yourselves.

This is why the literally know nothing.



GoneWithTheWind

Most of the activism and propaganda of the left is intentional and directed from groups and countries that embrace a Marxist/Leninist socialist/communist agenda. Every activist since before the anti Vietnam war activism has been puppets of this far left agenda. This story, if it is true, is just another hint or precursor to the success of this agenda and the fall of the West. If we do not fight this tooth and nail, in the streets and in the schools and most certainly at the ballot box we will lose our Republic and the world, the Western world will lose everything.



JK Brown

These parents deserve every bit of heartache their psychologically abused children will visit upon them.



JK Brown

I’m curious, the girl being 5, have they given her the full story of Aztec reality? The human sacrifice of tens of thousands in one go? The widespread slavery imposed on surrounding tribes of indigenous people?

Or perhaps the Mexican traditions that come from the colonial Spanish and French masters of the region?



Seattle Sam

The problem with the world is white people. The problem with white people is they’re white.



Steven Wilson

The good news is that when the time comes they will get on board the cattle cars to the camps without a whimper. They wouldn’t want to make a scene which is also part of their culture.



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