Vanessa Chiasson

You Can’t Avoid Racism by Moving to Canada

For decades, the man who operated a small convenience store by a bend in the road in my Cape Breton Island home town in Nova Scotia was casually called “Jimmy the Jew.” The store he ran was a nondescript white building with unparalleled views of the grey Atlantic and maintained a stock of potato chips that was varied, plentiful, and consistent—no small consideration for a child with discretionary junk food income. It was an ordinary store run by an ordinary man—a man who wasn’t Jewish.

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