University of Toronto says white nationalist group not welcome on campus - Macleans.ca
 

University of Toronto says white nationalist group not welcome on campus

The university’s president said bigotry, hate and violence have no place campus


 

TORONTO – The University of Toronto has told a white nationalist group they are not welcome to hold a rally on campus.

The group — called the Canadian Nationalist Party — has set up a Facebook page promoting a gathering on campus in September to discuss the nationalist movement in Canada and the future of the country.

“We have contacted the group to let them know they don’t have permission to use our space,” said university spokeswoman Althea Blackburn-Evans on Wednesday.

The university’s president, Meric Gertler, said bigotry, hate and violence have no place campus and condemned the deadly clash between protesters and white supremacists in Virginia over the weekend that left one woman dead and 19 others injured.

“As we prepare to welcome students, faculty and staff to our campuses for the start of another academic year, it is important that we reaffirm our collective and unwavering commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion,” Gertler said.

He said those values “are cornerstones of outstanding scholarship, teaching, and learning, which can thrive only by embracing the broadest range of people and encouraging the free expression of diverse perspectives in an atmosphere of mutual respect.”

The events in Virginia are an important reminder to speak out against acts of violence, he said.

Heather Heyer, 32, died after a car slammed into a crowd of people protesting a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., on Saturday. James Fields Jr., described as an admirer of Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany, has been charged with second-degree murder in Heyer’s death. A memorial service was taking place Wednesday in Charlottesville for Heyer.

MORE: Canada must confront its own white nationalism

“The academic community must continue to condemn acts of violence, intimidation, and the fostering of hate,” Gertler said in his statement, which didn’t mention the Toronto rally directly.

The university said the group has not requested to book space at the campus. The school said they have reached out to Facebook to pull the event page down, although it still existed as of Wednesday afternoon.

The rally is scheduled to take place on Sept. 14, according to that online posting, which sparked a backlash on social media.

Travis Patron, the group’s leader, said he still plans to go ahead with the rally and has alternate venues lined up, but didn’t provide details.

 

MORE: It wasn’t a lone, unusual flare-up. Charlottesville really is America.

 

 

When asked if he is a white supremacist, Patron pointed The Canadian Press to a video he posted on Wednesday to the group’s website.

“We are not a white supremacist, white nationalist, far-right extremist movement,” Patron said in the video. “We do not exclusively represent one race of people. We do not believe that any particular race of people is superior or inferior to any other.”

He added that the group is against homosexuality, “transgenderism,” the “Islamification of the country” and globalism.

“In 1971, 97 per cent of Canada’s population was of European ethnicity. Therefore, we demand the suppression of the founding Canadian people, an agenda put forth by Pierre Trudeau and accelerated by Justin Trudeau, be discontinued immediately,” is one of the group’s demands.

The group could still hold their rally on city property provided they apply for a permit and sign a declaration of compliance with anti-harassment and discrimination legislation.

Spokeswoman Wynna Brown said the city “will not tolerate, ignore, or condone illegal discrimination or harassment and is committed to promoting respectful conduct, tolerance and inclusion when permitting the use of public space and city facilities.”


 

University of Toronto says white nationalist group not welcome on campus

  1. It sounds like the president has little confidence in the intelligence of the Universities students and staff to use science and logic to expose the flaws in an argument. A sad situation.

    How does the university under this president then teach students to deal with arguments they come across and disagree with?

    With censorship of our constitutional right to freedom of expression?

    With violent confrontations?

    Nothing more to see here folks.

  2. We do not allow hate speech, university or not.

    This is not the Middle Ages where a university was the only place you could break barriers.

    • If universities can’t break barriers how do we learn anything new? Education and science is supposed to ‘break barriers’ – anything else is faith and dogma. Not that there is anything wrong with those – in the study of metaphysics.

  3. Huge double standard UFT — huge double standard.
    Is not your mascot still the beaver? That sacred, totem and power animal of our indigenous people?
    Clean-up your own house first!

  4. That’s what the zealots said about science during the dark ages, but they called it heresy.

  5. When you start censoring, where do you stop? Unpopular ideas don’t draw crowds. And if they do there is some education that should be happening. Universities are supposed to be about education, right?