Edmontonians show unity and rally together after this weekend’s horrific attack
Saturday night was a dark moment for the city of Edmonton. We were home to a series of attacks on both our police force and a number of innocent victims. Although we don’t know for a fact why these attacks happened, we can all agree it was fortunate there weren’t any fatalities.
The question now is: Where do we go from here? Are these events going to fracture us and create division, or can we rally around our strength of community and push forward? Time will tell. I was proud to see a rally held by the Alberta Muslim Public Affairs Council the next day featuring prominent leaders in our community speaking out against this abhorrent act.
On the other hand, some of the community has felt hateful reverberations. Local musician Mohsin Zaman described a certain incident he encountered following the attack in a Facebook post.
“To the guy who yelled “ISIS” and pointed his hand out like a gun at me whilst driving by, YOU:
– Are the true minority in this country.
– Are not going to spread fear.
– Will NOT be an excuse to divide, but rather, an excuse to unite. Let us not use one bad seed as an excuse to burn down the entire crop. We are better than that.”
We spoke to Zaman and asked for his perspective on the incident.
“To be quite honest, I wasn’t very surprised,” he says. “Hate has always been present in our societies, one way or the other. It’s just sad when it surfaces most after someone’s death or injury. You know what else has been present in our societies? Love. It also surfaces, and outweighs the hate on any given day. It’s not just a cheesy thing to say. It’s true, and we know it. That’s what most Edmontonians have shown so far.”
Although he was a victim, Zaman still believes in the good nature of Edmonton citizens.
“Ignorance creates room for dialogue and education,” Zaman says. “That’s how I feel about it now. My heart knows that most of this great city/country thinks this way too, and acts with vigilance.”
I know Zaman is not alone in the love he encourages; there are many Edmontonians that stand behind him and his message.
I hope that in the upcoming months, we can have an open and positive discourse when it comes to these issues. We can not allow this act to disrupt how we go about our lives or look at certain people in our community. We need to support our law enforcement and the victims of obscene or hateful acts. We need to come together and show the spirit of what Edmonton truly is: A diverse melting pot that works to create the same opportunities and freedoms for each and every person.
Vue Weekly will continue to be a place for open discussion regarding these issues and conversations. I look forward to hearing from our readers, and continuing this discourse in the upcoming months. In the meantime, I am thankful that we didn’t lose any lives this past Saturday, and that we continue to come together and stand strong as a united community.