By ABUBAKAR N. KASIM
I AM taking this opportunity to wish my country prosperity, peace and justice. Happy Canada Day.
I am worried to see the trend my nation is taking, away from the principles of justice, equality, peace keeping and other noble qualities Canada used to be known and respected for.
For the first time probably in our history has the government introduced a two tier system where Canadians who were not born here can loose their citizenship as outlined in Bill C24. Whereas Canadians who were born here will not face the same consequences even if they were accused of the same violations or even more.
This reminds me when I was jumping up and down celebrating my citizenship. Someone told me not to be too much excited about it. You have to be white to be a true Canadian, he said.
All what you hear, he added, about rights of citizenship are only temporary for you. He advised me to always read the fine prints of every product. You will always be a second class citizen, and it can be taken away without notice.
His remarks is making sense now with this newly introduced divisive bill.
Another bill (C51) is introduced to take away the rights and civil liberties of Canadians especially those who look different in the name of fighting terrorism.
Women who choose to wear certain religious attire such as the niqab can not take their citizenship anymore. As the Talibans have vowed to know what is best for women and dictated to them how to dress, our government has also done the same towards women as if they can’t think for themselves.
As we are celebrating the birthday of our nation on July 1st, we should strive to maintain our principles of justice and equality which has brought us to where we are today.
Our whole world is in turmoil. Wars, mass killings, catastrophes, starvation and injustices are rampant. Let us pause to reflect on what we can do for the betterment of humanity.
We live in global village where we are interconnected more than ever before.
We should not take things for granted and assume that what is taking place in other countries will not affect us here.
Sooner or later it will.
We should take this opportunity of celebration of the birth of our nation to come together as human family and ask ourselves what has gone wrong?
There are serious questions we need to ask ourselves. We should not play smart as politicians do and avoid the real issue altogether.
Why we as human beings have failed to be able to play a role in establishing some kind of a just peace deal between Palestinians and Israelis? Why have we failed to do something about it for so long and instead we have been taking sides which serve our political agenda here at home.
Why we only intervene to stop massacres around the world when it serves our interest and look the other way when we don’t get a piece of the pie as it shows our lack of action in Syria to stop President Assad to continue slaughtering his own people?
Canada Day celebration should be a chance to bring us as Canadians together to tackle the many problems facing our fellow humans almost everywhere. Things are getting out of control. The ship is almost sinking. We need to play a key role around the world in order to establish justice. Our hypocrisy and double standard is not helping. Instead it is making things worse. It is adding fuel into the fire including the fight against terrorism.
Let us pray for peace and justice. These are the two qualities that are missing in today’s world.
Happy and Prosperous Canada Day!