Len Paris, author of Growing up Black in New Glasgow, weighs in on the sentencing of Shawn Wade Hynes, the man who severely injured young Nhlanhla Dlamini with a a high velocity nail gun.
Media release: Protest coordinator, Angela Bowden, the Dlamini family and the citizens of Nova Scotia would like to see the court ruling for house arrest for Shawn Wade Hynes be increased to jail time to reflect the seriousness of the crime. The deliberate attempted murder on Nhlanhla Dlamini’s life was a violent, racist hate crime and it should have been treated as such.
The Nova Scotia Advocate has always been honoured to publish the amazing writing of Angela Bowden. We did a long interview to mark the publication of her first poetry collection, Unspoken Truth. In the interview we explore some of the themes of her book, and how growing up Black in New Glasgow shaped her and helped her recognize the deeply traumatic impact of racism on generations of Black Nova Scotians.
Wayne Desmond looks at the delays in the conviction of Shawn Wade Hynes, who in a case that has racist overtones, shot his young co-worker Nhlanhla Dlamini with a high velocity nail gun. One and a half years have passed since the defendant was found guilty, and sentencing has been postponed several times. Meanwhile, the defendant’s life has not changed in any regard. He is able to continue his life as a “not guilty” individual.
It’s been 2.5 since a co-worker seriously injured Nhlanhla Dlamini with a nail gun, and 1.5 years since a guilty verdict was rendered, but the man found guilty still has not been sentenced. For Nhlanhla’s family and supporters that’s too long a wait. Justice must be served, and must be seen to be served.
Wayne Desmond reflects on the long history of Black excellence in his hometown of New Glasgow. “So, when I think about African Heritage month, I don’t just think about the famous Black icons that are celebrated. I think about the trailblazers of my hometown, whose shoulders I stand on.”
Reading the book you get the feeling that Paris did not set out to write about racism as such. It just so happens that you cannot write about growing up Black in Nova Scotia, no matter when, no matter where, without writing about racism.
Angela Bowden: Nova Scotia has had a significant race problem for ever and I’m not sure why that comes as such a surprise to some Nova Scotians, especially considering there are so many who are historically and currently participating in this abuse, and it is so publicly documented in this new age of internet and social media.
“And somebody besides me must remember how their parents did not allow Black boys and Black girls into their homes, so we had to sneak in and sneak out of their homes and their parties.” Angela Bowden wonders when white people will finally come to acknowledge all the aggression and contempt heaped upon Black Nova Scotians at the most intimate levels.
Today I went to Pictou to hear the Shawn Wade Hynes verdict. Hynes is the guy who shot a high velocity nail gun at young co-worker Nhlanhla Dlamini. I don’t think most white people understood how important a case it was for many in the African Nova Scotian community, nor the surprise and tremendous relief that was felt when Hynes was found guilty of criminal negligence and assault with a weapon.