Does the federal government fund and support racially discriminating groups and individuals?

Drawing the contrast between the relative kid glove treatment of the “Freedom” Convoy and providing them a further platform in the Rouleau Commission:

Federal funding of hateful messaging has been in the news lately after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau condemned the comments of a senior consultant who was working on a federally funded anti-racist project. As a result of Laith Marouf’s anti-French and anti-Semitic postings, the $130,000 funding of the group, the Community Media Advocacy Centre, was suspended. This happened, despite the federal government apparently knowing about Marouf’s past.

Contrast that to the multi-million dollar federal Public Order Emergency Commission inquiry into the federal government temporary use of the 1988 Emergencies Act this past February to remove the Freedom Convoy protesters from downtown Ottawa.

Yet the Freedom Convoy group antics, which paralyzed Ottawa’s downtown core for more than three weeks this past January and February, forced authorities to spend millions of dollars in policing costs. The Freedom Convoy leaders are now wanting even more money than could be granted under Treasury Board guidelines and are asking for $450,000 of their $5-million in donations to be unfrozen, now held in escrow. This request may actually happen even though it’s a bit rich when such participation brings with it more propaganda for their disruptive causes.

In addition to the Rouleau inquiry giving the Freedom Convoy legal standing and funding, this federally funded commission is encouraging written submissions from Freedom Convoy supporters. The federally funded commission has made a point of encouraging Freedom Convoy supporters to make written submissions to it

The federal commission’s lead question on its website asks for those on side of the Freedom Convoy “protest” to describe their experiences. Those who were affected by the “protest” activities are asked secondarily to offer their experiences.

Rouleau is, in effect, placing the Freedom Convoy participants in an important, if not equal, position to those who were affected by the convoy, giving them more space and prominence than they deserve.

Canada’s Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino, meanwhile, according to highly redacted cabinet minutes, saw the Freedom Convoy protesters falling into two categories: the “harmless and happy with a strong relationship to faith communities,” and the “harder extremists trying to undermine government institutions and law enforcement.” However, it seemed as if the police in Ottawa were siding with the Freedom Convoy protesters during February’s occupation.

Mendicino did not comment on the tacit mix and dynamics of the happy folks and extremists who occupied downtown Ottawa for more than three weeks.

Does this leave federal authorities less than neutral or too easy on the illegal activities of the Freedom Convoy participants? Do we not remember the federal government’s past racist actions with residential schools or the internment of Canadian Japanese citizens during the Second World War?

The federal government continues to mount ineffective anti-racist “campaigns” and decries anti-Semitic activities without taking action.

It’s also standing idly by when it comes to Quebec’s racist Bill 21 and its overt discrimination against minorities and those, for instance, who teach and wear hijabs being ousted.

The Freedom Convoy protesters appear to be treated as official interveners.

So let’s call the feds for what they are: a bunch of yellow-shrinking-stand-by con artists.

Ken Rubin founded the Ottawa People’s Commission to hear from residents about the harm incurred during last February’s Freedom Convoy siege in Ottawa, though the views expressed here are his own personal ones.

Source: Does the federal government fund and support racially discriminating groups and individuals?

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

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