Canadian politicians and policy makers seem to be establishing a clear pattern of prejudice. For years now Jerome Almon, a black executive from Detroit has been sounding the alarmthat Black people, particularly African-Americans were being profiled by Canadian immigration officials at
Source: University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
the borders. Mr. Almon has blamed black celebritiesin part because they are not only victims but also witnesses to these crimes but they remain quiet about the mistreatment. For context think Bill Cosby or any other black person of influence who remained on the sidelines of civil rights movement.
Mr. Almon has his skeptics who attempt use his genre of music to dismiss allegations against both Germany and Canada for their racially based policies. The Toronto based website The Free Radical has an entire page dedicated to “hate rapper” Jerome Almon and outright characterizes his concerns about racial profiling as “whining”. Whether one supports the type of entertainment business Jerome Almon operates is not the point, there is strong evidence that the Canadian government is racial profiling black people and to underscore Mr. Almon charge against other celebrities, rap icon and actor LL Cool J in May tweetedhis displeasure about how he was treated by Canadian immigration officials. LL Cool J would later try to play down his tweet later for the national media.
Murtz Jaffer, a Canadian producer and TV personality interviewed LL Cool J, who reportedly replied,
LL Cool J said that it wasn’t as serious as he made it sound. “They just wanted to get better acquainted with LL Cool J,” he said to which I suggested that they might have just been fans.
Again, Almon has accused black celebrities like LL Cool J of selling out by not wanting to get involved in exposing racist policies of the countries where they do business or vacation. In Canada’s case, Mr. Almon says blacks from America alone account for twenty percent of the Canadian economy without which would go into depression and he suggest that Canada should be the target of economic boycotts. Considering Mr. Cool J is from the hood, he along with other celebrities, athletes and entertainer’s lack of action on this front is enough to make one wonder if they can still relate to the daily struggles of Black people around the globe against racism and government policies based in white supremacy.
Canadian conservatives expand their assault on civil and human rights.
As if the racial profiling was not a big enough offence, conservatives in the House of Commons just successfully repealed a section of the Canadian Human Rights Act. Interestingly, Canadian conservatives seem to be very much ideologically inline with their American and Israeli counter-parts. By removing section 13, the conservatives in Canadahave rendered the law against hate speech useless by removing the means to investigate or take action on claims.
It is troubling in regards to the United States, President Barack Obama clearly has self-indentified as a Black person and is cognizant of the evils of racism, but his administration turns a blind eye to and the racist policies of several of its allies. At the very least the U.S. State Department could have issued a travel warning to its citizens of African descent that they would be targets of racial profiling by Canadian officials.
It is moves like this or the lack thereof that stirs up debate about whether or not the Obama administration has earned the continued support of the black community as a unified voting bloc, which proved valuable to the one-term Senator from Illinois in the 2008 elections. If black voter turn out is anywhere close to being as low as it was during the 2010 mid-terms, the Obama administration could be in serious trouble of jeopardizing a second term.