Chevi Rabbit, a 2-Spirit advocate in Alberta says she was the victim of hate speech at a Little Caesars pizza restaurant in the City of Wetaskiwan about an hour south of Edmonton.
“I feel bad for the other 2-Spirits out there who are facing this kind of discrimination on a daily basis, because this is just me getting pizza so obviously this is happening right across the board,” she said.
The incident, which took place on July 10, was recorded by Rabbit and posted to social media.
In the video, a man, who doesn’t appear on the video, tells Rabbit that “it’s either him or her,” he can be heard saying. “There’s no in between. You either take Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.”
Rabbit responds, “I’m 2-Spirit” to which the man says, “that’s garbage, that’s total garbage.”
The police were not called.
As of this posting the video of the exchange has 4,736 views.
“I got a lot of other 2 spirited people saying this is their daily occurrence as they go to the grocery store, they go to restaurants. They get assaulted like this,” she said.
Listen to the exchange in the video here:
As a response, Rabbit organized an anti-hate rally at Wetaskiwin city hall.
City councillors and the mayor attended and offered their support.
“We want to have an inclusive community and we denounce any hate speech of any sort and any discriminatory comments, especially in times like now,” said Gabreielle Blaztz-Morgan is a city councillor.
Wetaskiwin Mayor Tyler Gandam said he applauded Rabbit’s determination to speak out about being discriminated against.
“I really admire someone who, in the face of adversity, when she isn’t being spoken to the way she should be, that she steps out and acknowledges it and says it’s not right,” said Gandam.
About 50 people attended the rally.
Rick Wilson, Indigenous relations minister in Alberta whose daughter is 2 spirited, said the hate has to stop.
“It just seems like it’s rampant right now. Enough hate, let’s just love,” he said. “We got enough problems, we don’t need this.”