The Canadian Press
OTTAWA–Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delivered an emotional clarion call yesterday as he urged people of all political stripes to turn the page on hateful ideology and condemn the sort of intolerance that fuelled the brutal killing of 50 Muslims in New Zealand.
A visibly angry Trudeau denounced the “small, toxic segments” of society that peddle the belief diversity is a weakness, spewing hatred and inciting brutality.
“We see it here in Canada–in online harassment, anonymous letters, defaced places of worship, acts of violence, and even murder,” he told the House of Commons as party leaders expressed solidarity with the victims in Christchurch and their families.
“When we fail to denounce hatred with total conviction, we empower those people and legitimize their violence,” he warned.
Trudeau expressed sorrow at the many attacks in recent years that have taken the lives of defenceless people at mosques, temples, churches, synagogues, concerts, schools, and malls.
“I’m sick and tired of extending our thoughts and our prayers,” he said. “People around the world are exhausted by the carnage.
“We have to chase out this hatred from our parties, fight it online, denounce it at town halls, push back when it reaches our front door,” he stressed.
Conservative leader Andrew Scheer joined Trudeau in stressing the need to condemn all racist ideologies and doctrines of prejudice.
Canada has, from its inception, been a country built on values that transcend religious, ethnic, and linguistic divides, Scheer noted.
“This is who we are, and this is who we will always be,” he remarked. “Those who think otherwise have no place in our democracy.”
In his maiden speech to the Commons, NDP leader Jagmeet Singh said the use of dehumanizing language and making immigration out to be a threat can breed fear and fuel hatred.
“Let’s open our hearts and replace the ignorance, the lack of knowledge, with understanding, which will create the climate for compassion so we care for one another,” he said.