Letter: Election loss in Kelowna blamed on racism

For decades I have written in the local press about racism.

To the editor:

For me, not to be elected to council had never been based on qualification and experience. If it were, then those who got elected must have mind-blowing qualifications and were incredibly modest not to let it be known.

It is racism. And, if there is someone out there who could tell me it isn’t, then do not keep me in suspense, and to please educate me. For decades I have written in the local press about racism. The only, and absolutely brilliant answer I had got so far had been a question: “If you don’t like it here, why don’t you go back to where you came from?”

Three months after my arrival in Kelowna, after 10 fantastic years in Ontario, I came to the realization I had moved to a place where people had cultivated an 18th Century mentality of the Anglo-Saxon-British era of stiff upper lip, arrogance, and a sense of superiority. However, I hasten to point out I view the younger generation as progressive and open-minded, compared to the old farts. By the way, many thanks to the handful of nice people who voted for me, consisting of 99.9% of an ex-Anglo-Saxon-British background.

The big question about racism is: Why?

I grew up under British colonization. I arrived in London, England at 19. Walking around London, I saw many posters looking for workers, with ‘Coloured need not apply’. Amazingly, it did not bother me at all, as I had lived it. However, I almost fainted when I saw signs: ‘Colour and Irish need not apply!’

Over the years, I have read several letters to the editor complaining about Canada taking in immigrant, visible minority. In 1967 (the year of my arrival) Canada chose a way to remove discrimination and prejudice from the process of choosing which immigrants to let in. The points system ignored an applicant’s race and country of origin (until then it helped to be white).

Those who complained about visible minority immigrants feel taxpayers’ money would be better spent on Canadians that need help, totally ignorant of the fact that Canada, the second largest country in the world after Russia, has just over 37 millions. Between now and 2021, a million jobs are expected to go unfilled across Canada because of a high number of seniors retiring and not enough childbirth.

Chancellor Angela Merkel has been both open-minded and brilliant because she knew Germany has one of the lowest birthrates in the world,and she took in 1 million Syrians, at great cost to herself. Also, German population is aging with a median age of 43, and needs younger people to work in the factories and service industries and pay the taxes.

Racists, please grow up into the 21st Century. Thank you.

Mo Rajabally

Kelowna

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