The Fractured Nation Interviews

Maude Barnstone

You're a Racist. Admit It!

InterviewsJohnny: Let’s talk about your world now that Canada is no more. Do you think the creation of the North American African-Caribbean League was a good thing?

Maude: Not really, but it was inevitable.

Johnny: Inevitable! Why?

Maude: During troubled times people will seek refuge with people they trust. Canadian multiculturalism encouraged people to look to their ethnic communities for support. When the troubles came, that is what they did. All those government sponsored commercials railing against racism actually encouraged it by accentuating our differences instead of why we should trust each other. A trust that comes from knowing we share the same values no matter the color of our skin.

The North American African-Caribbean League became a sanctuary from the real and imagined threats posed by the “others.” It is a cliché worth repeating, understanding brings down barriers, fear creates them.

Johnny: Yet, you leave this safe sanctuary to go out and speak against oppression of women of all races. Why?

Maude: Because they are all my sisters and they are in trouble.

Johnny: Isn’t this a form of racism, racism against the male race?

Maude: The male race? That’s a bit of a stretch even for you Johnny. You should be careful when using that emotionally charged word. It has been my experience that those who accuse others of racism tend to harbour racist sentiments of the worst kind.

Johnny: I am not a racist.

Maude: We are all racist to one degree or another. Faced with a choice in saving a member of our race as opposed to another, we will tend to save one of our race, the same way a mother faced with the choice of saving her child or her neighbours will tend to chose her own. We do it without thinking. What I call pre-meditated, cold-blooded racism is what we have to guard against. Racism that promotes hate; that promotes ideas that one race is superior to the other in all things … that sort of thing. To love your race is okay. To hate or demean other races is not.

Johnny: You won’t get an argument from me there. However, I don’t agree with your statement that faced with a black and white choice, no pun intended, between saving a member of our race as opposed to a member of another race we will tend to save one from our race. I think we will save the one that we consider a friend, whatever his or her racial make-up.

Maude: Johnny, Johnny, Johnny … you continue to surprise me. If what you are saying is that we should all be friends, you won’t get an argument from me.

Johnny: We’re almost out of time. Before we have to say goodbye, I would like to ask you one final question. In your opinion did any good came out of The Fracture?

Maude: No good whatsoever! For a lot of women, it has been a return to the Dark Ages. Even in Boom-Boom’s enlightened ACNA, large dowries are required from the bride’s family, forced, arranged marriages are on the rise – can bride burning be far behind? Of course, the condition of women in ACNA is nowhere near the brutal, nightmarish conditions that women, in what Boom-Boom calls Allahland, have to put up with. I hate Canada.

Johnny: You hate Canada!

Maude: The Canada that let it all happen. The line from the poem you quoted at the beginning of your interview with Domeini said it all “The best lack all convictions, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.” This was Canada before The Fracture! For lack of conviction they let it all slip away and the world today is a worse place because if it.

Johnny: Thank you Maude. Thank you for coming on the show and most of all, thank you for having the courage of your convictions. If more Canadians had had your courage and your passion for the ideal that was Canada, maybe Canada would still be around today [looking into the camera]. Join us tomorrow for our last interview when our guest will be Jean Joseph Souviens, the Vice-President of Québec. Good night.