Today echos with gunshots that rang out in Montréal’s École Polytechnique 21 years ago. On that day fourteen women were gunned down for no other reason than that they were women. I still remember hearing the news the first time.
Each had their lives stolen from them by a mentally ill man who believed that women were preventing him from getting a job.
As a man, and as an engineering professional, I believe that it is my responsibility to speak out against this kind of violence, and against any form of violence against another. Every day we see evidence that on some level, many men still believe that it is OK to target women, children, animals and each other. That somehow it is OK to take out their anger against helpless targets.
It’s not OK. It will NEVER be OK.
So today, as you go about your life, take a moment and think about the violence that surrounds you. Look for opportunities to step in to prevent incidents, however minor, that can result in harm to another. Think about these fourteen daughters, sisters, mothers and aunts. Help to ensure that this can never happen again.
- Geneviève Bergeron (born 1968), civil engineering student
- Hélène Colgan (born 1966), mechanical engineering student
- Nathalie Croteau (born 1966), mechanical engineering student
- Barbara Daigneault (born 1967), mechanical engineering student
- Anne-Marie Edward (born 1968), chemical engineering student
- Maud Haviernick (born 1960), materials engineering student
- Maryse Laganière (born 1964), budget clerk in the École Polytechnique’s finance department
- Maryse Leclair (born 1966), materials engineering student
- Anne-Marie Lemay (born 1967), mechanical engineering student
- Sonia Pelletier (born 1961), mechanical engineering student
- Michèle Richard (born 1968), materials engineering student
- Annie St-Arneault (born 1966), mechanical engineering student
- Annie Turcotte (born 1969), materials engineering student
- Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz (born 1958), nursing student