Lately I’m finding myself with a stronger voice. Perhaps because 50 is approaching, I feel that I’m no longer willing to sit back and be that good, quiet Canadian girl who just wants everyone to play nice in the sandbox, or in our case, on the skating rink. But who am I kidding? Canadians are born with skates on and if you’ve ever been to a hockey game you’d know that we are not as timid as people make us out to be. You’ve read this blog…I’m certainly not a wilting flower but now I am really ready to kick some serious ass.
But, I digress. I’ve been living outside Canada since 2001, that’s 14 years and a lot has changed. I still proudly hold a Canadian Passport but lately I have seen some things that don’t make me feel so proud anymore. In particular, a meme that read “Fuck off, we’re full” with the maple leaf flag behind it.
Living abroad and on ships has allowed me the luxury to observe just how different and fortunate my nationality is. Let’s face it. I come from a country that most people have no gripe with. It is clean, safe, sound and multicultural. I will be the first to admit too that I had taken these privileges for granted most of my life. Until I started to travel beyond my safe borders.
So what’s my beef then? Well, in a nutshell, I’m getting tired of reading posts on social media about how Immigration and the Syrian refugee situation is robbing honest Canadian tax payers their due in life. Really?
For years, Canada has taken in many immigrants. This is what makes us so diverse and special. Our Italian population is actually higher than Italians in Italy! But that doesn’t mean Canada is Italian. Many years ago, post WWII, Canada opened its borders and people worked hard and prospered. Life was good, jobs were a plenty. Now, jobs are more scarce and people are scared for the future.
Let them in and they will take away our jobs, our social services and rob us of our privileges. Oops, there’s that word again. So for all you Canadians who are scared about losing your well earned privileges, this is what I have to say…
– [ ] Syrians lost everything and are fleeing from a war. They are getting money, yes, perhaps more than the average pensioner or war veteran, but like I said, they lost everything. The money and support they are getting has a time limit. It is not indefinite.
– [ ] They need to start over again, re-educate themselves and learn a language and culture before they have a chance to “pay back” their debt to society.
– [ ] They are getting free education and medical immediately because if they didn’t then how else would they be able to get a job and off social assistance? Free medical is necessary too unless you want a bigger problem on your hands later on.
Listen, we cannot live our lives in a protected bubble. It cannot be ok for my parents, grandparents or great-grandparents to come to Canada all those decades ago to start a new life in a safe country to be shamed by their offspring with these self-righteous attitudes of “there won’t be enough for us and why didn’t I get a free University education, my parents paid a lot of taxes and it should be given to me first and not a refugee”.
The system is not perfect, I agree totally. There will be some who will take advantage too, life is unfair. How many people can honestly say that they’ve never bought a counterfiet item at a black market or not declared every dollar they made to the taxman?
But basta! I’ve heard enough! To me, all of you sound like a bunch of spoilt, whining babies. Go back to your swimming pools and continue to fry your brains in the sun so that when you get skin cancer I can write another blog post about how it isn’t fair that my tax dollars are being spent on medical bills for stupid people who don’t have enough common sense to put sunblock on!
Enough said! So if you don’t like what I have to say, go ahead, I’m all ears…I will just block you anyway because that is the democratic mature thing to do, right? I know this is a shit storm post. No apologies, the gloves are off.
I have not lived in Canada for 14 years, what gives me the right to say anything? I live in Italy. You know that beautiful, messed up country that everyone wants to visit but never live because it is so corrupt and backwards?
Oh, and one more thing… I’ve started a Facebook group. It is called ESL for Syrians in Canada. It is a new idea that I hope will catch on. The premise is to offer free online English lessons to any Syrian who has recently come to Canada. All ESL teachers are welcome to join and offer whatever services or time they can. It is meant to be a porthole to network and connect teachers with Syrians. I realize that I am far away from Canada but if they can get access to a computer and Skype, it could work.