Novel Thomas

About the Author Novel Thomas

Novel is a well-respected columnist and a foundation member of the CONTACT team. He graduated from Concordia University’s English department. His writing is insightful and thought-provoking.

Commentaries

THE INTRINSIC VALUE OF THE 21st CENTURY SLAVES

Call it what you will, “me too” will call it what it is: cultural appropriation. When I turned on the radio early one morning the beginning of last week and heard about a gathering at a downtown venue where people were protesting the staging of a special musical performance as part of this year’s Jazz Festival, the thought that immediately came to mind was “Oh boy, here we go again…” It was almost natural. Over the years I’ve heard of so many instances of [Black] cultural appropriation in its various forms. All to tacitly illustrate and/or demonstrate that in both …

Read more 0 Comments
Commentaries

Africa’s twenty-first century children are stepping up

ALWAYS PLAYING CATCH-UP   Are four young Africans on the cusp of a viable 21st century discovery, or will this one be like others I’ve heard about, but which quickly evaporate like steam? So, someone recently sent me a WhatsApp message with a bold message: “Share this! Let’s make them famous because the media won’t.” Below is the notation @BLACKBUSINESS. I consulted Google and a world of Black businesses exploded on the computer screen. Tapping into a few of them, I wasn’t seeing what I wanted. After trying a few other search phrases, a whole lot of phrases germane to …

Read more 0 Comments
Commentaries

RACIAL TERRORISM…

They stopped using guns to subjugate and placate, now its words to dehumanize… Each time I hear another story about the matter dealing with the issue of race and racism, ethnicity, the manifestations and ramifications all I can think of is here we go again. About a week-and-a half or so that I first heard about a group of First Nations kids in Quebec City for a hockey tournament. I refer to it as another ‘here-we-go-again’ incident. Then watching the news a day later I was able to see footage of the incident: First Nations kids were being subjected to …

Read more 0 Comments
Commentaries

THAT FILLY IS NOT JUST NEIGHING…

Don’t dismiss her; she’s speaking of her experiences…   Matters of race and racism, their manifestations and ramifications are always so hard to talk about publicly, and are often dismissed… But when coming from the horse’s mouth, the afflicted, it is time to listen, not simply dismiss it with a yawn… So when, about a week ago, 21-year-old Françoise Abanda said some things, which, I’m sure, many people thought she should’ve just kept to herself, tongues started wagging and lips flapping… It was one of the lead sports story that day. Abanda was apparently responding to a Twitter user who …

Read more 0 Comments
Commentaries

IN THE UNFORGETTABLE WORDS OF JOHN AND YOKO

All those two Korean men, and many people around the world were thinking, saying and singing…   I watched with great interest on CNN, a late Thursday night here, a couple weeks ago, 13 or so hours later on Friday in Northeast Asia. Another page was been added to the world history book as leaders of the two Koreas, President Kim Jong Un of the North and South Korea’s Moon Jae-in were preparing to meet for the first time at a concrete separation referred to as the demarcation line). Why did that so-called Breaking News story matter to me? Because …

Read more 0 Comments
Commentaries

TRAINING SOME PEOPLE TO BE BETTER PEOPLE

I’m still trying to wrap my head around the idea of “diversity training…” What exactly is the expected outcome for people with that certain affliction, which they continually use to afflict those they perceive to be socially vulnerable?   Each time there’s another egregious white-perpetrated, anti-Black [people, particularly male] incident in the news, words like “diversity… racial sensitivity… training… anti-bias” and other hackneyed terms along those lines get tossed around in the media, becoming the flavour of the moment—for a day or three—then evaporate. That recent racially tainted incident at that Starbucks store in Philadelphia was just another of those …

Read more 0 Comments
Commentaries

THE KING IS DEAD BUT THE MESSAGE LIVES…

Celebrating a renowned global civil rights icon The spirit of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was ubiquitous last Wednesday, April 4, as peace-loving people of various stripes converged on Union United Church to commemorate and celebrate his life and legacy. More profoundly it was the 50th anniversary of the assassination of the internationally-renowned activist, advocate, anti-war critic, social justice and human rights advocate, Nobel Peace Prize recipient… He was standing on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, TN, that evening—perhaps for a respite from another hectic day of Civil Rights activity, just “doing God’s work” as he …

Read more 0 Comments
Commentaries

Images Of The Real World

SOME GOODNESS, SADNESS, EVIL AND BADNESS Ariel Jeffrey Kouakou is still missing, but his parents and extended family and friends, other good parents and thousands of concerned citizens are keeping collective hopes alive. Whatever that nameless white woman wrote on social media that caused such consternation among so many people of goodwill who were listening to CJAD radio a few days after the story of the young boy’s disappearance hit the news was no surprise. It was another occasion for [some] people with questionable intentions and skewed thinking to crawl out of the crevices of anonymity and wallow in their …

Read more 0 Comments
Commentaries

Rapprochement: Whiffs of Korean Reunification?

Last year I watched a PBS documentary about the Korean War, with heart-wrenching images of men killing other men on a battlefield in the dead of winter. Having seen other documentaries on the same subject over the years, this one provided more food for thought as far as war goes, and also nourished my permanent opposition to the madness of war and the wanton killing by both sides over [respective governments’] political, ideological and other differences that force them to face-off in the first place. What was especially painful to watch were men (on either side of that Korean conflict) …

Read more 0 Comments
Commentaries

Exploring Biblical Roots of Black History

Novel Thomas Believe it, there are stories in the Bible to help us better understand our African history, and there’s much to be extracted as we continue in our individual and collective quest to extract our historic truth from Europe’s historical contrivance and distortion of [our African] history. Which is what, in keeping with the need to find out and learn more about our history, writer and recurring Montreal Community Contact contributor N’Oji Mzilikazi, delivered a mind-opening lecture, Blacks in the Bible, the evening of Friday, February 23, at the Council For Black Aging center in LaSalle. Weather conditions notwithstanding, …

Read more 0 Comments