Dear Mr Trudeau, pt 6

It started to get tough, around #27.

26.

Dear Mr Trudeau,

The Pope suggested that every Christian parish should take in one refugee family. I think that is an awesome idea, because instead of putting a lot of Syrian people in a  Syrian ghetto where they will continue to live their old culture but under very poor conditions, they will integrate with the rest of our society, learn how we live, and add more richness to our culture. Diversity is beautiful. Please let more Syrians come to Canada and let them spread out everywhere.

Thanks,

Shannon

27.

Dear Mr Trudeau,

In school I was taught that Canada is a tolerant country where all cultures are welcome. It’s scary to see some of the xenophobic things that people post on Facebook. I think some Canadians have forgotten what being Canadian means. We’re the world’s Boy Scouts, and that’s a good thing. Let’s earn our Refugee Host badge.

Thanks,

Shannon

28.

Dear Mr Trudeau,

Not all Syrians are Muslim. Syria is actually a very diverse country. I’ve been learning a lot about it while I write you these letters. I’m trying to come up with a hundred reasons why we ought to welcome refugees. You’d think “because it’s the right thing to do” would be enough, but that doesn’t seem to be enough for some people. I’m only at number 28, but “because it’s the right thing to do” is the one that keeps coming back, for me. I’ll tell you more about how diverse Syria is in my next letter. You probably already know this stuff, because you’re the Prime Minister, but I’m posting these letters on Facebook too so that everyone can learn.

Thanks,

Shannon

29.

Dear Mr Trudeau,

Sunni Arabs make up the largest population group in Syria. There is also a decently large Christian population, about 400,000 according to Wikipedia. There used to be a large Jewish population, but they mostly left due to persecution. Clearly Syrians have some lessons to learn about tolerance, same as we do. The Kurds are the second largest population group, at about 10%. The Kurds have also been persecuted. In the 60’s, oil was discovered in a predominantly Kurdish province, and the Syrian government started military action against the Kurds.

Reading the history of the area makes me understand, a little, the fear that some Canadians have of Arabs. It seems like they’re just always fighting with each other, and we don’t want them to bring their fights here. Canadians are pretty good at not fighting, though. We have enough room, water, and food for a lot of people here. We waste tons of food every day. Our clean water is basically unlimited, it falls out of the sky whether you want it to or not. There’s 4 square kilometres of space for every Canadian citizen. Maybe we can be a good influence on the incoming refugees. Maybe our peace can spread to the Middle East, instead of their war spreading here.

Love,

Shannon

30.

Dear Mr Trudeau,

It seems like the Kurds in Syria are treated a lot like the way we used to treat aboriginal Canadians. Wikipedia says, “Kurds often speak the Kurdish language in public, unless all those present do not. According to the Human Rights Watch, Kurds in Syria are not allowed to officially use the Kurdish language, are not allowed to register children with Kurdish names, are prohibited to start businesses that do not have Arabic names, are not permitted to build Kurdish private schools, and are prohibited from publishing books and other materials written in Kurdish. But this is no longer enforced due to the civil war.”

Clearly that behaviour didn’t go well for us, and we’re still paying our aboriginals back for the damage that was done to them. No matter how much we pay, it doesn’t seem to be enough. It takes a lot to undo the psychic damage of persecuting an entire race. We (the European immigrants, that is) are also reduced by what was done to aboriginal Canadians. We shouldn’t have done that. But it’s too late. It’s too late to unpersecute the Kurds, too. But peace, for the Sunnis and the Kurds, can start in Canada when they realize they both miss the same homeland.

Thanks,

Shannon

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Shannon Graham

Shannon has been writing brief essays and occasional how-to articles at Rocketships, Unaffiliated (.ca) whenever inspiration strikes, since 2012.

She is interested in your opinion.

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