Today, in Canada, it’s National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. This is not a marketing ploy, nor an arbitrarily chosen date either.
It’s the anniversary of the École Polytechnique Massacre in Montréal, when a violent misogynist named Marc Lépine shot 28 women, killing 14 of them.*
In his suicide note, Lépine specifically blamed ‘feminists’ for ruining his life. For stealing his position in the school. Because they were studying engineering at a college that had rejected him — apparently for not having the required prerequisite courses, not because of any sort of quota, btw. They took something from him that he didn’t have nor deserve. Seems a (sadly) familiar motivation.
December 6 will always been associated with this event. This is important.
But it’s also a day to be reminded of the stark reality that violence against women is not going away, that women are far more likely to be assaulted by someone they know than a stranger, that probably every day, hundreds of women and children fleeing domestic violence can’t find a shelter space, that the government spent years largely sitting on their hands when it came to acting on the epidemic of missing and murdered aboriginal women. This is also important. So important.
But, my immature side always smirks when I remember that this is the last kind of legacy Marc Lépine would have wanted, women and their allies, maudites FEMINISTS uniting to gather strength against monsters like him.
* Yep, Canada has school shootings, but this was 26 years ago, and since then, only two ‘mass’ shootings are on the record; a total of three people died (21 others injured), including one of the shooters.