My last name is O’Mara. It’s an Irish name and back in the ’70s my father, Joe, received something in the mail addressed to “Joseph Omar.”
A few days ago, Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib became the first Muslim women to be elected to the United States Congress.
To paraphrase a song by the great Sam Cooke, a change HAS come.
Cooke’s civil rights anthem was more in line with Colin Kaepernick’s kneeling during the national anthem before NFL games. A protest against treatment of American Americans at the hands of racist police departments.
I’m not sure if Cooke could have predicted that a refugee from Somalia would become the house representative from Minnesota.
But the face of North American politics is changing. Darker skinned. LGBT (Jared Polis is openly gay and was elected Governor of Colorado). Representing a diverse with a capital D constituency.
Canada’s Minister of National Defence is Harjit Sajjan. Lieutenant Colonel in the Canadian Armed Forces and decorated for his service in Afghanistan.
And born in India.
Our Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship is Ahmed Hussen, who fled Mogadishu after the civil war in his native Somalia.
As a Canadian, I take great pride in having those men guiding and protecting our wonderful nation. We are in great hands,
And, getting back to the women.
I’ve been a Macleans subscriber for many years and that magazine has been labelled as conservative…but they feature a column by one of my favourite writers, Tabatha Southey, who has attacked Trump with great wit and insightful commentary.
They paid tribute to Canada’s Foreign Minister with this cover story…
Chrystia Freeland has been a frequent guest on Real Time with Bill Maher. Love that show.
And back to Sam Cooke.
“There been times when I think I couldn’t last for long,
But now I think I’m able to carry on.
It’s been a long time coming. But I know a change is gonna come, oh yes it will.”
Michael Moore said this last week on Late Night with Seth Myers:
“If I could just speak to my fellow angry white American guys who are semi-uneducated like me — ‘dudes, give it up.’ We’ve been running the show for 10,000 years. It’s like we’ve had a long run as men running everything. … Why don’t we just take a break? Let the majority gender run the show. What are you scared of?’”
And this son of “Omar” is going to follow my very distant relative (hey, we could be) Ilhan Omar on social media because I feel Ilhan, Elizabeth Warren, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Chrystia and Rashida are leading us to a more humane and peaceful coexistence on this planet.
It’s their time, and it’s about time.