Why does Canada insist on honouring a xenophobic fascist?

by Michael Petrou

No, I’m not talking about Quebecois nationalist Abbé Lionel Groulx — though that would also be a good question. As near as I can tell, Quebec hasn’t named anything after the Jew-hating priest for several decades. And — who knows? — maybe renaming the Montreal metro station after someone who didn’t admire Benito Mussolini might lead to Quebeckers wearing turbans or some other calamity.

I’m talking about Emily Murphy, one of the so-called “Famous Five,” who launched a case seeking to prove that women were “persons” and could therefore sit in the Senate. Her image, in statue form or on murals, blights Parliament Hill and several other locales across Canada. This month Canada announced she would appear on our new ePassport alongside Terry Fox.

Murphy might have believed that women were persons, but she wasn’t so sure about pretty much anyone who wasn’t as lily-white as her: Mexicans, Chinese, Greeks. Don’t even get her started on the “Negros.” She was a racist. So were a lot of people early last century. But, as Mark Bourrie explains in a recent essay, Murphy took her bigotry to strange and creepy extremes.

Her 1922 book The Black Candle revealed an international conspiracy of non-whites who had banded together to corrupt the “purity” of the white race with the help of drugs. Known as “The Ring,” this clandestine network was relentlessly working to turn virtuous British-Canadians into sex slaves and drug addicts. Murphy’s solution to the threat non-whites posed was to deport them.

It’s unclear if Murphy actually believed her own bunk, or reasoned that the the gravity of the threat posed by non-whites in Canada justified peddling lies. A psychologist might have something to say about her fascination with dark and dangerous foreigners seducing innocent white women like her. Here’s Bourrie describing her best-selling book:

[A]nother picture shows the natural progression of The Ring’s victims: a fully-clothed white woman reclines with shirtless black man. The caption reads: “When she acquires the habit, she does not know what lies before her; later she does not care.”

Opposite page 49, there’s a picture of a dark-skinned man and white woman, posed together, with opium paraphernalia in front of them. The caption says: “Once a woman has started on the trail of the poppy, the sledding is very easy and downgrade all the way.”

Happily, the Canadian government didn’t take Murphy’s advice on ethnic cleansing. But, according to Bourrie, Canada can thank Murphy for our 90-year ban on cannabis.

Enjoy your new passport.




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Why does Canada insist on honouring a xenophobic fascist?

  1. Winston Churchill, Tommy Douglas and many others believed in Eugenics.

    Please stop judging the past by the standards of today.

  2. And — who knows? — maybe renaming the Montreal metro station after someone who didn’t admire Benito Mussolini might lead to Quebeckers wearing turbans or some other calamity.
    Very bad joke

  3. 2003 called. They want their tired-even-then trope back.

    • No idea what this comment means.

  4. Sounds like a description of Ann Coulter.

  5. Why shouldn’t Canada honour Murphy when Quebec has xenophobic-fascists as their current gov’t, we are ever so proud of our apartheid system for Natives and Canada funds planned parenthood. Canada is a white, middle class country that gives $$$ to racist orgs to murder brown and black babies in third world countries around the world. Honouring Murphy fits perfectly with the times.

    Ms Murphy’s ideas seem to have been heartily embraced by many Canadians. Our ancestors wanted abortion and sterilization because of hatred, now people claim to want to murder ethnic babies out of love. Canada supports policies that Ms Murphy would have approved of but Canadians don’t think it matters because we murder for love, not hate.

    • Nobody’s forcing anybody to have an abortion. This is the nuttiest response to anything I’ve ever read.

  6. CBC Sept 2011
    “Planned Parenthood, which provides an array of sexual and reproductive health services, including abortions, abortion counselling and training for providers, is getting the federal funding after Oda ….. ”

    Black Genocide

    Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion provider in America. 78% of their clinics are in minority communities. Blacks make up 12% of the population, but 35% of the abortions in America. Are we being targeted? Isn’t that genocide? We are the only minority in America that is on the decline in population. If the current trend continues, by 2038 the black vote will be insignificant.

    Did you know that the founder of Planned Parenthood, Margaret Sanger, was a devout racist who created the Negro Project designed to sterilize unknowing black women and others she deemed as undesirables of society? The founder of Planned Parenthood said, “Colored people are like human weeds and are to be exterminated.” Is her vision being fulfilled today?

  7. From all this breathlessness from so many quarters over the recipients of honours, who appears on currency and passports, and who and what will be featured in the various museums across the land, perhaps we should stick to just putting pictures of (nice) animals (the kind that don’t hurt other animals: no bears, for example), (nice) trees, and other (nice) plants (the kind that don’t hurt other plants or animals: sorry Newfoundland, no pitcher plants) on our currency and passports.

  8. She was selling books by being provocative and pandering to a widespread view. You’re doing the same with this blog post, M. Petrou.

  9. Emily Murphy wrote racist propaganda as Janey Canuck and is unworthy of being on the Canadian passport.

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