Answering Don Cherry

Don Cherry’s ugly racism has backfired spectacularly. His ouster is long overdue and entirely justified. Last Saturday I witnessed the best possible answer to his attempt to weaponize the poppy. I was at a mall in suburban Toronto. A group of air cadets was distributing poppies. Everyone in the group was a member of a visible minority, a person of colour. At the moment, I thought to myself that this was a wonderful instance of shared values in our diverse society. A few hours later, this experience made me realize how wrong Cherry was with respect to both values and facts.

In the docudrama The Insider, the Mike Wallace character, concerned with the effect his hesitation standing up to CBS management on behalf of a tobacco industry whistleblower will have on his reputation, muses “But history only remembers most what you did last … Fame has a fifteen minute half-life, infamy lasts a little longer.” Time will tell if this is also true of Don Cherry.

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