This Week in Canada …

I am awake, I am alive, as I contemplate this week in Canadian history and just how cool it suddenly is to wear orange.

But to the non-Indigenous who call themselves Canadians with pride, I ask you to realize that your commitment to reconciliation will not and cannot be determined by the colour of your clothes. As always, it will be demonstrated (if at all) by your actions.

And I am not talking about your actions to keynote speakers, to elders, to those with platforms and followers that you have invited to your events. I am talking about those who know all too well what September 30th is about, largely because they still dance daily with the ghosts of school days past.

So this week, as you commit to reconciliation, I ask you to consider how you treat that homeless Indigenous human standing outside your business, “harassing” your customers for loose change.

Notice your thought pattern when you must go around the intoxicated lost soul on the sidewalk on your way to your son’s soccer game.

Listen to your thoughts when you see Indigenous children playing loud and proud and free in the local grocery store, dancing between you and the fresh produce.

Notice your actions if you stop in for a visit to your local LCBO and see impoverished Indigenous souls hovering outside.

In short, notice your thoughts and actions towards those who truly are dancing with the Residential School legacy because it is too convenient, even too easy to limit your thinking to those children whose cries you never heard.

Mourn the children. We MUST mourn the children but then, go further. Dare to ask yourself if you hear the cries of those attempting to exist on your street or in your city. Do you hear them or are you too busy crying out NIMBY? Because that my friend, is where reconciliation must start. Not in boardrooms or blog posts, but in changed behaviour towards those who so desperately need this country to change.

This week, as we mourn the innocents who never came home, let us not forget, yet again, those who did – those who came home, those who struggle, those still dancing with the ghosts.

Food for thought …

I love you.