An inter-racial couple nearly driven from their Nova Scotia community when a cross was burned on their lawn is sick of living in fear and looking to leave after their car was found in flames on the weekend.
“This is strike two, we’re not waiting for strike three,” Michelle Lyon said Monday in a telephone interview from her home near Windsor. “When those two were arrested, we thought that was it. But now this.”
Ms. Lyon spoke shortly after returning from court, where one of the men charged in the cross-burning entered a plea of not guilty.
Ms. Lyon, who is white, and her fiancé, Shayne Howe, the only black man in tiny Poplar Grove, say they were awakened in February by shouts of “die nigger die.” They say a noose was dangling from a flaming cross on their lawn, but whoever did it was gone by the time Mr. Howe could get outside.
The incident shocked many in the province, as did the reaction of some prominent members of the black community who said they were not surprised at such overt hostility. One academic called it tangible evidence of the attitudes that cause some black people to call the province “the Mississippi of the North.”
This is just so sad and shameful it makes me feel sick.
We Canadians can be kind of smug about how we are so socially advanced over our neighbors to the south. A reminder that idiot tribalism can boil to the surface anywhere is something we should learn from.