Thursday, November 3, 2011

The xenophobic side of religion

It's that time of year again; November 11, or better known as "Remembrance Day" in Canada. It's not uncommon for the religious nuts of this country to hijack this day of remembrance to peddle their own agenda. Last year, I was at the Durham College Skills Training Center in Whitby, Ontario where Dean Fenton called for a moment of prayer while we stood around and rolled our eyes. This is a backwards educational institution that features a prayer room but no quiet place to study; but I digress. That will be a discussion for another post.  For this post, I'd like to draw your attention to a very xenophobic post that's been making the rounds at Facebook:
"I think it is very sad that Canada can't celebrate Christmas at school anymore. And now they want to stop playing the national anthem at morning assembly, cause it might upset some religious families. IT IS CANADA...SOLDIERS DIED UNDER THAT FLAG & ANTHEM TO FIGHT FOR THEIR WAY OF LIFE! If they are so offended by the way the country was raised please feel free to go back to where u came from! ENOUGH IS ENOUGH ........ if you agree please re-post! Don't come here to change our ways, ADAPT to them!!!"
 I replied to someone who shared this hateful tripe with this:
That's a rather xenophobic point of view which I'd like to think doesn't reflect the majority opinion of our multicultural country. It's also misdirected; a lot of the people who don't want religion in schools are ex-Christians who were born here who recognize the harm their beliefs had on them when they were children and want change for the better. Immigrants to our country typically do adapt, even when faced with ugly, ignorant, xenophobic hateful statements like "Go back to where u came from!" It makes me ashamed to call the person who wrote this a fellow Canadian, but at least I can attribute their hatefulness to religious beliefs which I do not share, reaffirming why religion has no place in our schools."
I think it's pretty obvious that the person who wrote the initial xenophobic post is a Christian attempting to stir up hatred towards other religious beliefs under the guise of protecting that which soldiers fought and died for.  While I have nothing but contempt for nearly every organized religion in existence today, I cannot tolerate hatred towards another human being. What makes this more disgusting is the fact that Canada is well known for its multiculturalism  and welcomes immigrants with seemingly open arms. In fact, my own great grandfather was an immigrant, and Canadian immigrants of today are no different, coming here for the same reasons he did.

I can only hope that an immigrant to my country who reads this kind of message isn't as ignorant as the person  who wrote it, and I want them to know that the people with pale skin and thinning hair are not all the same. Perhaps once greater numbers of people recognize how absurd religion really is, we might get that much closer to a brotherhood of man.