Tears are running down my cheeks.
Tonight, shortly after 8, someone entered a Mosque located in the Sainte-Foy neighbourhood in Quebec City and opened fire. 5 are reportedly dead although the police is yet to confirm that information. Two suspects are in custody.
I remember an argument I had with someone months ago. The person was criticizing Justin Trudeau for letting in so many Syrian Refugees. I told him that living next to a Mosque, I was much more afraid of a Canadian throwing a bomb at that building and my family getting hurt in the process than Syrian Refugees attacking us.
After seeing the news of the shooting, thoughts are wildly spinning in my head. All that I have been afraid of for the last two years, all that I have written about, trying to warn people about the dangers of a Trump Presidency, even for us, here, in Canada, seem to be materializing. Fragments of recent events, of executive orders and other abominations put in place since Trump has taken the oath of office keep haunting me. And this is only week one.
On social media, the comments posted by fellow Canadians on threads where I denounce the Orange One’s actions floor me. The lack of human compassion kills me. Where did these ignorant bigots and neo-fascists come from? Isn’t Canada one of the most tolerant and welcoming nations in the world? I can’t wrap my head around the fact that we all see things so extremely differently. I think this is why debating with anybody sitting on the right is so painfully hard, almost impossible. The divide is too great. How can I talk with someone who reveres Trump when I can’t see a shred of good in him. I am amazed to see people I had great respect for, blinded by the smoke and mirrors Trump has fabricated. They look at last week’s events and say “Trump doesn’t disappoint” with glee. I say “Trump doesn’t disappoint” with utter disdain.
These are scary times in which we live in. We are not Americans yet are so very influenced by what takes place south of the border. When the most powerful man in the world sends a divisive message, bans 134,000,000 from entering his country based on their religious faith with the stroke of a pen, he also gives a voice to the millions of racists who lurking in the shadows. He legitimizes their right to exist. He normalizes intolerance. Worldwide.
Trump has cast a stone in the ocean of democracy and the ripples can be felt everywhere. Even here, in Canada. My Canada.
I don’t know if tonight’s events were Trump inspired. I suspect they were. If not entirely, at least partially. And I fear that it is only the beginning of an era like this continent has never seen.
Let’s hope I’m wrong.
In the meantime, I would like to offer my condolences to the families of the victims. And to the world watching, this is not who we are.