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Liberals back motion condemning Islamophobia

The controversial non-binding motion condemns Islamophobia and all other forms of racism and religious discrimination


 
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OTTAWA – Canadians will never be able to tackle hatred and discrimination against Muslims without naming the problem for what it is, says Liberal MP Iqra Khalid.

“Words have impact,” the Mississauga MP said Wednesday in the House of Commons as she opened the debate over her non-binding motion to condemn Islamophobia and all other forms of racism and religious discrimination.

“When we as a government stand together and condemn intolerance manifested through racism and religious discrimination, we can begin to tackle the issue.”

The Liberals have endorsed Khalid’s motion, which calls on the government to “recognize the need to quell the increasing public climate of hate and fear” and condemn Islamophobia, as well as all other kinds of “systemic racism and religious discrimination.”

If the motion, known as M-103, is passed, the Commons heritage committee would also be asked to study the issue and develop a strategy to tackle it.

Heritage Minister Melanie Joly said passing the non-binding motion would send a strong message about discrimination against the Muslim community, particularly in light of the recent deadly attack on a mosque in Quebec City.

“We overwhelmingly reject the politics of racism and exclusion,” Joly said outside the Commons, where she was surrounded by Liberal MPs and cabinet ministers to demonstrate that no one in the Liberal caucus would likely oppose it.

A number of Conservative MPs – including leadership hopefuls – have called for the motion to be more inclusive, warning it risks stifling freedom of expression by preventing criticism of elements of Islam or Muslim culture, such as the face-covering veil known as the niqab.

Conservative MP David Anderson called it problematic that the motion does not define Islamophobia.

“Some apply the term only to serious acts of hostility, while others apply it to every critique and every act against Islam,” Anderson said during the debate.

The Conservatives want the reference to Islamophobia dropped, but Khalid told the Commons that it’s important to describe mounting levels of racism and hate crimes against Muslims for what it is.

“I will not do so anymore than I would speak to the Holocaust and not mention that the overwhelming majority of victims were six million followers of the Jewish faith and that anti-Semitism was the root cause of the Holocaust,” she said.

“We cannot address a problem if we fail to call it by its true name.”

Last year, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau faced criticism for not having specifically referenced Jewish victims in his statement marking International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Trudeau did not repeat the same omission this year, but U.S. President Donald Trump did and his administration stood by the choice of words.

Conservative leadership candidate Kellie Leitch, meanwhile, tweeted a link to a petition against M-103 featuring the image of young white female _ tape over her mouth emblazoned with the name of the motion _ over a blurred background image of police officers, guns drawn, responding to the Parliament Hill shooting in October 2014.

Leitch’s office did not respond to a request for comment.

Khalid said the motion would not touch on freedom of expression, but would in fact bolster it by hearing from racial and religious minorities who feel their freedom of expression is currently curtailed.

“To recognize where we currently have a blind spot, where we ‘other’ certain Canadian voices can only result in an enrichment of our multicultural, secular national conversation,” she said.

Khalid, a Muslim, said her own experience with Islamophobia over the past few weeks has convinced her to press ahead.

“Over the past few weeks, I along with some of my colleagues, have been the recipients of hateful comments,” she said. “This strengthens my resolve to continue to combat this issue.”

NDP Leader Tom Mulcair said he thinks the motion is important, but also wants to see Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the Liberals specifically criticize U.S. President Donald Trump for the anti-Muslim nature of some of his rhetoric and policy proposals.


 
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Liberals back motion condemning Islamophobia

  1. It’s amazing that we have to keep repeating this message over and over again…..when we know very well what hate leads to.

  2. This is just another liberal step towards thought control.

    • Really?

      And just how would they do that?

      And since you guys believe anything on a moment’s notice anyway….why would they bother?

    • Personally, i thought it was a master stroke for the liberals, it just happens to open up the cleavage with Islamophobia in the conservative party leadership race and a precursor to the next election. Harper used to try this on the Grits and NDP when the cons were in power, and it worked for him, its a wedge that cuts right through the heart of the conservative party. The NDP are not going to argue with this policy. Values will kill the conservative party, i mean the cons are still talking about right to life and ending abortion. The Conservative are so far back in the woods with ‘Canadian Values’, you will have to send a search party out to find them, because they will never come out from the political wilderness with this kind of thinking in the 21st century.

      • Real Progressive Conservatives would never have a problem with this, its just the reform part of the con party that just can’t get past these divisive ideological stand offs.

      • Yes, the Cons have so many wedges to exploit they spend most of their time arguing with each other and worrying about Justin’s hair.

        Not ready to grow up yet,

  3. They are slowly inching towards blasphemy laws. That’s been the goal the entire time. We have such a well-funded, Muslim Brotherhood-connected Muslim advocacy/lobbying presence in this country, wtf does everyone think they want to do? In other words, why would anyone think that their goals are different here in Canada than anywhere else in the world?

    Sooner, rather than later, it will be a crime to criticize the twisted ideology of Islam. It will be a crime to put a picture of history’s most celebrated pedophile Muhammed (piss be upon him) on your facebook or something like that. And the worst part is so many so-called liberal Canadians will go along with this, because they’ve been conditioned that way.

      • LOL, so you’re saying that I’m “spewing hate speech”? Do you think I should be prosecuted for what I wrote? I’m not surprised that you read HuffPo. You seem to be exactly the kind of “liberal” that I was referring to. So do you think that someone should face charges for saying Islam sucks or putting a pic of the pedophile desert bandit Muhammed (piss be upon him) on their facebook?

    • To tell you the truth Johnd80, i despise religion period, it rots peoples minds, and i have said this many times, but i realize the world doesn’t revolve around me or any one single person. I am a human being, and as a human being, if i want people to respect my choices in life, i have to respect theirs as well. So there is room for everyone who don’t break the law in this country, to choose the path they want to take whether it is religious ideology or not. What ever turns their crank, as long as its not breaking laws. PS: I’m just loving watching the conservative in the HOCs today, twist in a pretzel trying to defend the racist positions on ‘Canadian Values’, trying not to look racist, after having their way with Trudeau over the ‘Weekend at Aga Khans’.

      • Fine I respect people’s choices in life too, they can do whatever the hell they want. That’s the beauty of a free society like Canada, as opposed to an Islamic theocracy for example. But you say there is room for everyone in this country as long as they don’t break the law. What happens if they pass legislation that makes it against the law to be critical of Islam? Is there room for someone like that in Canada? Now I know that M-103 isn’t a bill, it isn’t a law, but it seems to be setting the stage for legislation like that. I find the idea of Islamic blasphemy laws here in Canada to be terrifying – do you?

  4. Hilarious. They must think Canadian’s are forgetful or stupid?

    Less than 1 year ago Trudeau closed the “Office of Religious Freedom” that was established by Harper.

    What was the mandate of this office?
    – protect, and advocate on behalf of, religious minorities under threat;
    – oppose religious hatred and intolerance; and
    – promote Canadian values of pluralism and tolerance abroad.

    Why was the office closed? Dion said “We (Liberals) don’t mix politics and religion”. “We believe that human rights are better defended when they are considered, universal, indivisible, interdependent and interrelated, as set out in the Vienna Declaration.”.

    Oh well. So much for Liberals not mixing religion and politics. Appears to me that this motion was exactly what the previous office was setup for.

    • What’s really funny is that one of the groups that was calling on the Liberals to not get rid of the office was Ahmaddiya Muslims, the small, pacifist sect of Islam that faces persecution by Sunni Muslims around the globe. They – as well as any liberal Muslims or ex-Muslims who champion reform in Islam – will always be pushed to the side and have their voices marginalized as long as our Liberal government is so cozy with the Muslim Brotherhood.

  5. There are hate laws on the ‘books’ already.
    This is just one step closer to Sharia laws.

  6. So, hijack an NDP motion, that you voted down previously, dust it off and call it your own?

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