Thursday, December 06, 2012

Remembering the massacre

On December 6, 1989, I was on holiday in Arizona, spending a week by myself driving around the Navajo and Hopi reservations. I kept the car radio on a local Navajo station and I didn't understand much of it, but when I started to hear Montreal mentioned in newscasts I flipped to an English channel.

My first thought, given the general ignorance of Canada in the US, was that the news stories were mistaken. Back in 1989 there weren't a lot of these types of shootings, and there were certainly none in Canada. The idea of men being told to leave the room so the women could be lined up and shot, the idea of the shooter resenting educated women so much that he murdered female engineering students en masse, the idea that he could legally obtain the fire arm in Canada... it was all too much to comprehend. I didn't believe the story till I landed back in Toronto and saw the Canadian papers.

Women have come a long way since 1989: you could say that what Marc Lepine feared has come to pass. But let's not kid ourselves that women are equal yet. I don't want to make a long list so I'll mention just one small example of the real state of our world: Women's names don't appear in phone books. In most families, the man's name is listed but not the woman's. For single women, it's too dangerous to print more than an initial. We have a ways to go.


Anonymous said...

This massacre and so many many many more since this one could have been prevented if our country just had better gun control. If this meant that no-one could own guns, so be it. Guns are the cause of all evils and are completely unnecessary in any civilized society. Only the police and military should have guns. And even then, if no people had guns the police wouldn’t need them either. In today’s society, no citizen really needs to own a gun whatsoever. So many more people would be alive today instead of dead victims if all guns were banned.

Yappa said...

I agree!