A couple of years ago I had the opportunity to purchase a home in California.
After the deal was signed, and my wife and I had moved in, my neighbour, an elderly black man named Cleo, came over to welcome us to the neighbourhood. He jokingly said, I could have saved $20,000 if I had got him to stand outside his house while we were inspecting what was to become our new house.
We laughed, but the laughter had an uncomfortable air. I think Cleo was fishing to see if we would be friendly towards him. Later, Cleo and his wife Shirley told us of their experiences of being coloured in the 40’s and 50’s. Segregated schools, drinking fountains, washrooms, backseat in buses etc.
They are wonderful people and we had many wonderful moments. Every story I heard, I smugly thought to myself, thank goodness I live in Canada, especially in Campbell River, where nothing like this happens.
The stories about property values going down if the Tlowitisis people move into a certain area are disconcerting to say the least, and have the same “kick in the stomach” feeling as the horror stories from my friend Cleo. Here, where we open our hearts to charities, Syrian refugees and Fort Mac evacuees, support our local events and brag of where we live, we cannot open our hearts to our own fellow countrymen, women and children.
Where are our leaders in this. Where is our MLA, our MP, our city council? It is shameful.