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.

News

Just ask the purveyors of racism…

WHY THEY HATE? The late legendary comedian, social commentator/activist/humourist… Dick Gregory once said, “Racism is a form of societal insanity…” He should know. In his 85 years of life, especially during those heady days of racism when he took his life’s existence and experiences [with racism] to the stage, the social cancer was grist for his work on stage. Although he knew that there was nothing at all funny about that institutionalized social practice and its detrimental effects on many, Dick Gregory injected humour into the subject, which many at different levels – political, judiciary, socially – refuse to address …

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Commentaries

JUST LIVING BLACK…

One of the things about being Black is When I heard the news story early last Monday morning I immediately thought, ‘there they go again’, another person trying to impose [his] racial birthright – whiteness – on another Black person, this one a 77-year-old Black woman who had boarded a Ryanair aircraft for a flight to London, England. Having heard the story that morning I couldn’t wait to get home to see if the story made the evening news. And there it was on the NBC evening news. Here’s the literal setup on the plane, according to an eyewitness account …

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IMMIGRANTS, MIGRANTS, REFUGEEs

Global Political Capital It’s a “modern” world, one that has morphed into what’s referred to as a “global village,” spawning the concept of globalization… It is the reality, the world has shrunk, so people are taking advantage, are constantly on the move, landing at airports, crossing lands and borders (legally and illegally), or by sea, landing on different shores, or being rescued at sea (some, the unfortunate, washing up on beaches…). Meanwhile, in former “welcoming countries” the discussions have become discordant, contentious, heated… as certain domestic forces suffering from “migrant fatigue” begin to show their colours. The immigration/refugee/migrant issue (all …

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THE POLITICS OF QUEBEC POLITICS…

So next Monday Quebecers will elect a new government. It will be led by one of the leaders of the two major parties vying to govern the province for the next four or five years, le Parti Liberal du Quebec, or the upstart CAQ (Coalition Avenir du Quebec) party. Heading into the final days of the campaign the incumbent premier, and leader of the governing Liberal Party, Philippe Couillard, and leader of the opposition CAQ, Francois Legault, were running neck and neck, with the latter party holding a slight lead, heading into minority government territory, according to pundits. And so …

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We’re Not A Monolith, Just Living Black…

IT’S TRUE An online article goes like this, “San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick did not stand during the national anthem during a pre-season game…” “After the game, Kaepernick stood firm in his decision to choose not to stand for the anthem saying, “I am not looking for approval. I have to stand up for people that are oppressed.” Another person stated, “Kaepernick’s protest is just as American as the flag.” And a gold medal winner in a different sport opined that she “supports Kaepernick’s right to protest.” Former NBA player, Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf supports Kaepernick, having made a similar statement …

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TRUMPETING FOR A RACE WAR?

Racism thrives in America, now he’s attempting to foment racial conflict overseas in a country that’s still trying to come to terms with its racist past.   If for one reason or another you missed, or have forgotten about, that long period of dehumanization of Black people in South Africa – a slice of one of the most mineral-rich and most beautiful parts of Africa – here’s an excerpt from an online article that sums up the dawn of white minority (supremacy, reign of terror and) lording over South Africa’s majority Black and other nonwhite peoples. “[…] After the National …

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The unending talk about race, racism…

I don’t know about you, but hearing all that talk about race, racism and its deleterious effects (on Black people in particular) last weekend just about drove me nuts. Especially because all the politically and racially fuelled angst and outcome are being pinned on one individual, who some in Black America refer to as “#45.” Understandably, his arrival on the political global stage, his ascension to what many consider to be the supreme political office in the world, still have people befuddled, scratching their heads, pulling out their hair, tongues wagging, and more… Many contend and have concluded that he’s …

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Africa Musings…

A CONTINENT OF PARADOX AND IRONIES For over a decade – actually it seems more like forever – the world has declined into a sort of chaotic state as primarily man-made conflict, natural disasters, drought, famine, starvation… continue to impact certain countries, which have people running away from all these crises. The visible result is thousands landing and/or washing up on Mediterranean seashores, with the fortunate ones trekking westward, crashing international borders. All of them seeking refuge and safe havens, to borrow that usual cliché, “start a new life.” The response to this ongoing human tsunami impacting western countries is …

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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 …

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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 …

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