Hi there, folks. It’s me, Michael Bach, your Diversity Dude.
And no. CCDI has not relocated to somewhere tropical. I’m on vacation, but I was so moved by recent actions in my home country that I felt I had to put down my piña colada and record this video.
Of course, I’m speaking of the recent horrific murder of six of our Muslim brothers in Quebec City.
I’m not going to comment on the situation south of the border because quite frankly, that’s a disaster that defies explanation. But it does say something when the president’s press secretary uses this horrible hate crime against Muslims, as a call for higher levels of xenophobic protectionism that excludes Muslims.
The alleged would-be murderer is a 27-year-old white francophone. From what I can tell, there’s nothing remarkable about him.
Except for one thing.
He’s a 27-year-old white man. He’s a 27-year-old, disenfranchised white man who felt justified in taking the lives of six innocent Muslims simply because of their faith. He’s a 27-year-old white man who feels threatened by diversity.
Alexandre Bissonette has just become the standard bearer for the Trumpification of North America. He represents something that we as a country cannot ignore. He’s young, he’s angry, and he feels like the world is changing and leaving him on the sidelines.
Mr. Bissonette is not unique. He’s not alone. He is an indication of something that I have seen coming since I started doing this work. As we put more and more focus on the advancement of women, the inclusion of people from different racial and ethnic groups, accessibility for people with disabilities, reconciliation with our indigenous peoples, as gender diverse people are finally being recognized as equal and distinct under the law, and as we as a country put more and more focus on immigration…who’s left out?
Alexandre Bissonette is left out. Straight, White, Able-bodied, Christian men (SWAM) feel left out. The C is silent.
Now is not the time to engage in a debate about privilege and how the Alexandre Bissonettes of the world are dripping in it because that isn’t going to help. He doesn’t understand privilege. What he understands is that he is under attack. And he felt the attack was so significant that he only had one option – to kill.
So, my message is to all my diversity and inclusion champions and professionals out there. Don’t underestimate the power of Alexandre Bissonette. Remember his name, and make sure that your diversity and inclusion strategies and programs take him into consideration. We need to make sure he’s at the table. We need to make sure his voice is heard. And we need to make sure he’s included. Otherwise, we’ll be feeding into his belief that diversity and inclusion are about everyone but the straight white able-bodied Christian man.
Right now, we as a country need to collectively mourn the loss of these six innocent victims, and rally behind their friends and family to remind the world that Canada is not a country of hate. Love must win.