The downside of acknowledging these cultural connections is that doing so can unfairly tar an entire community and perpetuate stereotypes. I'm sure Wente got grief for her column.Well said. It's time to let go of the multi-cultural doublethink known as political correctness. Covering up the symptoms has never been the way to deal with the problem.
But covering them up also incurs costs. First, it's dishonest. Politicians and social activists who pretend that these shootings are just expressions of generic "youth violence," when everyone knows otherwise, lose credibility. Secondly, it's impossible to fix a problem when you deny it exists.
Resources are finite, and need to be directed where most needed. A Caribbean-Canadian growing up at Jane and Finch in Toronto is more vulnerable to gang influences, and therefore in greater need of interventions, than a Korean-Canadian teenager in Markham. A young Muslim in Mississauga is more likely to encounter images of militant Islam than his Italian-Canadian counterpart living around Dufferin Street.
Of course bad people can incubate in any community, but cultural or ethnic groups have particular vulnerabilities. It shouldn't be forbidden to say so.
Sunday, August 2, 2009
A must read editorial by Leonard Stern. I can't believe, a major newspaper has actually dared to touch such a sensitive subject.