Orange Shirt Day

Oliver woke up this morning and, once we’d sorted out that he didn’t have COVID-19, his biggest concern was that he didn’t have an orange shirt.

It is, after all, Orange Shirt Day:

Orange Shirt Day is an opportunity for Islanders to listen, learn and reflect about the history of residential schools in Canada, and honour the thousands of survivors, their families, and passed loved ones. It is also a day to come together in the spirit of reconciliation and hope for a more inclusive and fair future for all. 

Fortunately, this was one problem I could solve right away: my parish-mate enterprise, Miꞌkmaq Printing & Design, was selling orange shirts from a table at 101 Prince Street, about 50 paces from our front door. I popped across the street, picked up an orange shirt, and Oliver was clothed and ready a few minutes later.

If only all parenting was so easy.

I suggested to Oliver that he post something on Facebook about Orange Shirt Day, and he did exactly that:

Oliver in his Orange Shirt Day short, carrying a Black Lives Matter placard.

Oliver understands, at a visceral level, that the colonialism and racism that gave rise to residential schools shares roots with that from which Black Lives Matter springs. I’m proud of him.