Saturday, December 05, 2015

Stephen Harper and the Legacy of Bigotry

When Stephen Harper fanned the flames of bigotry during the election campaign for crass political purposes, I predicted that the fires he was starting would be very difficult to put out.

And sure enough, now the newspapers are heaving and churning with racist comments.

Anti Muslim bigotry is being used to create a backlash against the refugees who will soon be arriving here. 

A photo surfaced on twitter from Tuscany station where the escalator had been sprayed in silver paint with the misspelled words: "F-K Syrea, Kill Musilums". 

And this too is Harper's foul legacy. 

Today we made the difficult decision to temporarily close comments on stories about indigenous people.

We've noticed over many months that these stories draw a disproportionate number of comments that cross the line and violate our guidelines. Some of the violations are obvious, some not so obvious; some comments are clearly hateful and vitriolic, some are simply ignorant. And some appear to be hate disguised as ignorance (i.e., racist sentiments expressed in benign language).

For while the bigots have always been there, and their bigotry has simmered below the surface.

As Naheed Nenshi pointed out recently, by pandering to them with his politics of division, Harper may have made them feel that it's now OK to spew their hateful views publicly in every direction.

“I haven’t heard stuff like that in a long time, and I think the really divisive rhetoric [around accommodating Syrian refugees] during the election gave people permission to say stuff that wasn’t polite to say in modern society.

And by so doing has empowered our ghastly homegrown bigots to feel free to go after even some of Canada's poorest and most vulnerable people...

Which couldn't be more cowardly and disgusting.

How disgusting? 

Just watch this video...

Can you believe that? Where do those brutish racists get the idea that they are superior to anyone? When they are the lowest of the low.

And who will put out the fires Stephen Harper started?

We really need to crush those bigots like bugs, like we crushed him and his filthy Cons.

We need to stop them from bullying our beautiful indigenous Canadians, and making the refugees who are seeking shelter in Canada feel like they're not welcome.

But the good news is we did fire this monstrous maniac...

Now we are going to destroy his legacy of bigotry.

And I know what I'm going to say if I meet a Syrian refugee:

Welcome to Canada. We're a country made up of people who came here from all over the world like you. So we're a country like so many others.

But we do have some Canadians who make this country special.

Wait until you meet the original inhabitants.

For they are truly amazing...

Please click here to recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers


  1. Two CBC radio shows place indigenous culture and issues front and centre, appreciated by indigenous and non-indigenous alike:

    1. hi David...thanks for that. I'm glad the CBC has programs like that. We need to hear from as many aboriginal voices as possible...

  2. Anonymous8:58 AM

    Stephen Harper unleashed a lot of rotten stuff in this country. Not just racism but cheating and greed and fear and resentment and lies and jealousy.

    1. Anonymous2:56 PM

      Perfectly said!!!!!!!!

    2. hi anon...he sure did. It was a horror show. And he saved the worst for the last....

  3. Anonymous10:02 AM

    A good explanation of what's really happening behind the scenes...
    "They" keep us preoccupied with kabuki and then "they" just take over because we were sleeping at the wheel.

    1. hi anon....yes that's true, but hopefully that is changing. Nobody can afford to be asleep at the wheel, not with the challenges our country and our planet face. Just like we did during the election campaign, we must keep hammering away trying to explain the issues and motivate people to get involved in the struggle ahead...

  4. Anonymous2:15 PM

    I think that a legacy of Harper could easily have been voter apathy. It's not very difficult to disengage people from their own democracy. I once heard about a scandal that rocked an MP when Chrétien was PM. One younger MP or aid was full of glee that someone on the other side was going through scandal. Chrétien corrected him and said, no this was bad for all elected MPs because it disenfranchised people, and that that was bad for democracy since many would just turn their backs on the whole process.

    At the time, this really struck a chord in me, and over the years have become very concerned that this is Harpers legacy. But we have hope now, and many people who vent their personal issues through racism do need to be slapped down. I know many who have purged FB friends because of recent splurge in racist social media comments. We need to fight this just as we need to re-engage. Maybe those racists are beyond hope. Trudeau was a genius in getting 4 million new voters out. Heartening that the cons have been completely out smarted😀😀

    1. hi anon...I think you're right, and Harper and his thugs went out of the way to encourage voter apathy. The way they behaved in Parliament was part of that game. They did they're best to turn off voters, and make it look like all politicians are as corrupted as the others.
      Thank good Justin Trudeau was able to inspire more Canadians to vote, so the Con plans to steal the election went nowhere....

  5. e.a.f.3:32 PM

    No I don't think who ever sprayed those words was impacted by Harper. They are just bat shit crazy and have bad manners to top it off. It might simply have been teenagers who don't know any better.

    Harper may have had an influence but I would suggest the American news media has a larger influence on attitudes in this country. When I come across people who make comments which I wonder where they got that sort of information from, when I ask them questions, its 9 times out of 10, they got it from FOX, America.

    Racism is something which exists in all societies. It doesn't take much to bring it out either. Like the C.B.C. having to end comments regarding First Nations. I hear it all the time from people who I'd really expect more from. A lot of it comes from socialization in Canada. If we are to change people's views on First Nations people, we start in the schools and our history lessons start with the First Nations and instead of teaching all sorts of other languages, school boards start creating classes for the First Nations language in their area. In some places such as Penticton, B.C. the language almost died out. They took to taping the last of the speakers of the language so there was a history of it. We need to teach about our country and the people who lived here prior to the Europeans arriving. We need to not lump First Nations together but have citizens who can say which groups of people lived where, just like in Europe they don't just say European, they say French, German, Italian, etc. In North and South America and Africa, we simply group people together when in fact not only do they have very different languages and customs they all look different. if you look at a traditional German you will not mistake them for a Southern Italian, yet in N. & S America, we just lump people all together, ditto in Africa. Different areas, different languages, different customs.

    1. hi e.a.f...they may not have been directly motivated by Harper, but with the comment sections and the hotlines boiling over with hate, it does give people like them more license to act out...

  6. Anonymous3:48 PM

    All these bigots and outright racists need to be outed and shamed for their deplorable ways. Maybe then they'll crawl back under the pile of shit they came from.

    1. hi I've mentioned several times, the hate laws in Britain are far more severe than the ones we have here. I understand the argument over free speech, but some of the vile stuff that is being written or said is just pure hate and it definitely needs to be controlled before things get completely out of hand, and vandalism becomes violence....

  7. I don't think they are just random ignorant teens. Look at the "Celtic" crosses on the graffiti (which are a hell of an insult to Celtic peoples, if one has ever seen a cemetery or church in a Celtic nation) - alas they have become a symbol of white supremacists.

    I wonder why on earth that part of Calgary is called "Tuscany"? It doesn't seem particularly Italian.

    Speaking of racists, alas the attacks in Paris have meant a big surge in votes for the Front national in French regional elections. They and the Daesh ar*eholes need one another... Hate Week!

    1. hi lagatta...Yes they are skinhead wannabes. And it is disgusting to see how all that hate is causing people to act out in Europe and North America. I can barely read or watch the American news anymore it all looks like madness. And the idea of Le Pen and all those other fascists gaining more power is deeply disturbing. And you're right the ISIS crazies and the neo nazis are just two sides of the same coin....