March 29, 1999, Cape Breton Post

Even THINKING expulsion puts JAG on bad course

by Shirley Christmas

To the Editor:

There comes a time in everyone's life when one must stop and say "enough is enough," and that time has come for me.

The respect and trust I held for JAG now crumbles into nothingness. It hurts me deeply to see a large group like JAG allow the possibility of such actions as dismissing other members of their peers on the grounds of where and who they work for.

It is a highly hypocritical and disgusting way to treat fellow members in this manner. It is shameful how the biased actions of one can cause such pain and humiliation for these three people: Rob Jessome, Brenda Tattrie, and Mike MacGrath, and their families.

There is something I must know. Did we as a group place ourselves on a pedestal? Are we so high and mighty that we can pick and choose who can or cannot sit at the roundtable or other JAG committees?

Would this despicable action eventually come to race, culture and religion just to name a few?

There is something so very wrong with this picture. For one we are not all from the same race, culture or religion. We hold different levels of employment and come from different levels of society. But what we have failed to see is the fact we are all volunteers. We united to battle a war against the environmental disaster in the midst of our city. We did not come together as concerned citizens to battle with each other.

By having allowed this issue to go through is ludicrous. It shows that the people of JAG are biased and ignorant not only amongst themselves but also to the rest of the people in this community.

Once again, the credibility of the Joint Action Group has been tainted. What we are doing whether you like to hear it or not is called discrimination, plain and simple. It is demeaning, degrading and humiliating to those having to face it. Discrimination is exactly what it shows - the ugliness of hate.

Trust me when I say that discrimination is not the path you want to take. I have been there, and the sad thing is I am still dealing with it today and perhaps will continue to do so till the day I die.

I have forwarded my resignation to the Joint Action Group because I cannot and will not take part in matters dealing with discrimination, especially when it involves other human beings. It goes against my conscience and beliefs of how people should be treated as equals.

If I continue to stay in this group, then I would become a hypocrite in the eyes of my children. My teachings would be meaningless to them.

This is a sad time but I must do what is right. I bid you all farewell.

Shirley Christmas
Bradley Street, Sydney
JAG should be GAG
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