Friday, October 31, 2014

Shooting Memorial, Peace Protest, and Indonesia Gala

An unsettling week.  The killing of two Canadian soldiers on Canadian soil prompted several impromptu memorials across the country.  One soldier in Quebec was struck in a hit-and-run incident, involving a possible Islamic radical. The radical driver was shot and killed by police. Another soldier was shot and killed while standing on guard at the Unknown Soldier memorial in Ottawa.  The shooter was killed while storming the halls of Parliament by the Sargent of Arms. It's not sure if he was a radical (Prime Minister Harper says yes, which would justify his call to war) or emotionally disturbed (as per the shooter's mother).

An impromptu service was held in Calgary in Memorial Park on Saturday for Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, the young soldier shot in Ottawa.  Merle, the organizer, was surprised at the number of people who turned out (about two dozen). There were soldiers in uniform, a local Islamic leader, and Rob Anders (a controversial Member of Parliament).  I wasn't surprised at the response. People draped in flags sang O Canada, listened to speeches, and signed a flag placed on the cenotaph.  I was surprised to see the often missing Anders.  After listening to his cringe-worthy juvenile speech -- "bad guys have guns, good guys should have guns, too" -- I was wishing he was still Missing In Action.

Merle - the memorial organizer

The fellow holding the blue, green and yellow flag said that it represents the northern countries of Africa, which are mostly Muslim, I guess. He also said he couldn't find his Canadian flag.

Rob Anders : "Bad guys have guns.  Good guys should have guns, too."

After lunch I met up with a smaller bunch of local activists holding a peace rally on the corner of 10th Street and Memorial Drive.  When I told one of them about the memorial he was also shocked that Anders was there. Not because of this often being MIA, but because Anders has a reputation for being non-supportive of military veterans.

An interesting side note.  The National Post ran a story about a guy who created a candid-camera-style "social experiment" video where an actor makes racist comments against another actor dressed in Islamic clothes. They were trying to judge how Canadians felt about the shootings in Ottawa.  The "racist" actor wound up getting punched in the nose.

Saturday evening Len, a photographer friend, and I covered an Indonesian Gala.  This was my second time assisting Len with photographing this gala and was familiar with most of the dances. This year they also brought in dancers from Los Angeles and Paris, France and had a young band performing Indonesian pop tunes. Last year it was held in a community hall.  This year it was at the Chinese Cultural Centre, which presented some challenges.  Like the full size stage, meaning the performers were above me most of the time, and the lighting (as usual).  I used mostly the Canon 50D (sometimes with on-camera flash) and a little bit of the Pentax K-5.  I think the K-5 is reaching its lifespan.  At one point the white balance suddenly turned blue then reverted back to AWB. Good thing the K-3 is coming down in price.

A traditional rice ceremony began the Gala.

Bali mask dancers - my favorite.

Nancy Susatyo of Los Angeles

Herman Sitepu of Paris, France


No comments:

Post a Comment