How was your Dominion Day? Was it drunken? Hot? Productive? Really weird because it was on a Tuesday so you're working a split shift of a week?
I spent my Canada day explaining to my boyfriend's Dad why Red Skins was indeed a racist name. And that saying, "But it's a compliment to wear the name like a badge of pride" is not actually true let alone relevant, and that white people can't depoliticize racialized, violent language by saying, "It's a compliment, bro!"
I was also informed by my boyfriend's Omi that racism wasn't really as big of a thing back in her day. She is an 85 year old German lady who lived in Berlin through WWII. Uh, sure. Yeah. I mean, my entire extended family on my Mom's side died in the Holocaust but totes not about racism!
To her credit she followed it up with, "But, that isn't really my business is it? If people say it's racist who am I to say it's not? I am just an old woman."
Luckily my boyfriend's Mom had my back, so I wasn't just shouting at my possibly future FIL about how he doesn't understand that defending the use of racial epithets is actually an act of aggression.
It seemed particularly fitting to discuss these things on Canada day, a holiday where so many are blindly patriotic without stopping to think about the people we displaced to occupy the spaces we do now. I am a vocal ally of Aboriginal communities and constantly find myself checking people in my life who parrot misinformation. But when it came to my boyfriend's family it was hard. I am still trying to form a relationship with these people and while I could get into a heated match with my own family there is still a sense that I should be on my best behaviour with the in-laws. And the fact that "being on my best behaviour" includes spending twenty minutes agonizing over my wording so as not to offend someone when I tell them "that's racist" is, well, really shitty!
And I didn't even get potato salad.
How were your BBQs and get togethers fellow canucks? And did anyone have one of those awesome jello and cool whip cakes made to look like the flag?