White nationalist groups on the rise in Canada, planning more rallies
August 18, 2017
By Katie Dangerfield, Global News |
The aftermath of a deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., continues to be felt in the United States and here in Canada. Since the tragedy took place, events for several white nationalist rallies have popped up across the country.
In Vancouver, a rally set for Saturday called the “WCAI Canada/CAP rally” was posted on Facebook by right-wing media group “ProperGander Promotions,” and lists speakers from several anti-immigrant groups. This prompted a counter rally, organized by an ad-hoc group calling itself Stand Up to Racism Metro Van.
On Sept. 14, the Canadian Nationalist Party is holding an event in Toronto to “discuss the nationalist movement in Canada and the future of our country,” according to a Facebook post. The post says the rally will be held at the University of Toronto, but the campus has denied this.
“There are several of these rallies planned for Toronto and one in Calgary too,” Barbara Perry, a University of Ontario Institute of Technology professor who studies hate crimes.
After the white nationalists marched in Charlottesville over the weekend, Perry said it sounded like it was a call to arms. Ex-KKK leader David Duke said the rally was a “turning point” for the movement. That messaging was heard all the way in Canada.
“We like to believe as Canadians this does not happen here… but the pendulum is swinging,” Michael Bach, CEO of the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion said.
He said since Donald Trump took the presidency in January, and even during his campaign, there has been a rise of hate crime in Canada.
This reality wasn’t lost on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. In a tweet Sunday afternoon, he the prime minister condemned the violence in Charlottesville and offered Canada’s support. But he also reminded Canadians that our country is not immune to racism.