Locals are expressing outrage after shocking photos were shared online last week. Canadians are upset that a local gravesite was vandalized after photos appeared online showing that tombstones had been covered in spraypainted racial slurs. The target of the crime was a First Nation's graveyard on Vancouver Island.
The photos were shared by Tanna Weir on Facebook. She explained in her post that a face plate from one of their loved one's graves was stolen. To make matters worse, a large racial slur was left in its place on the large granite monument.
In BC, the racist term "chug" has been used for First Nations and indigenous people. The derogatory term follows a stereotype that assumes they are all heavy drinkers and smokers. For many in that community who have overcome a history with substance abuse, the term is especially insulting as a reminder of their past.
The term is often used to reinforce negative stereotypes of Indigenous people in Vancouver, implying that they are lazy addicts. In this case, the vandalism at the graveyard is not only senseless but also despicable behaviour considering this was a memorial for people that have passed away.
Response to the incident has been overwhelmingly supportive. While the Qualicum First Nation is a very tight-knit community, even on Facebook Tanna Weir's post has been shared over 2000 times.
Many people commenting on the post have shared their disgust, heartbreak, and outrage that such a senseless act like desecrating a graveyard happened there.
In her post, Weir goes on to say that anyone with information should contact the RCMP. While this implies that there's an ongoing investigation and the community is seeking justice, but most importantly she says they want her family member's faceplate back.
Source: Global News