March 24, 2023

The Queens County Citizen

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Ontario municipal candidates face ‘organised hate’

Ontario municipal candidates face 'organised hate'

For example, Kojo Dumpte, who was trying his luck in a Hamilton neighborhood, saw a “Whites First” sticker on one of his posters.

Running for city council, I knew this would happen. And it happened, he said. We are not surprised.

Hamilton police are investigating three hate incidents related to the municipal election.

Candidates of diversity and women are increasingly targeted by these messages. Some had to devote time and energy to reviewing these threats. Others questioned the decision to enter politics.

Dr. Neely Kaplan-Mirth (Archive)

Photo: The Canadian Press/Sean Kilpatrick

Neely Kaplan-Mirth is running for the Ottawa-Carleton School Board for the first time. This family doctor is already known to the population for his positions on vaccination and public health measures during pandemics.

His campaign was targeted by miscreants. They stole posters from him. She received anti-Semitic messages and threats.

I was bombarded with messages. This is organized hate. »

A quote from Neely Kaplan-Mirth, Candidate, Ottawa-Carleton District School Board (OCDSB), Capital/Alta Vista

Ottawa police said they received 41 complaints, including one about a hate crime and vandalized election signs.

Acting Superintendent Heather Lachine said the number of complaints is not unusual compared to past elections. However, there is a police force more active 2022 and will notify candidates in advance of the hate crime complaint process.

Despite everything, there is no regret

In Hamilton, Mr. Dampte said his organization had to adopt a new approach to security, which took him away from the themes he wanted to develop during the campaign. He should react quickly to those kind of comments I don’t like Vox What voters do to him is to minimize potential conflicts, and that prevents him from talking about the policies he advocates.

Mr. Dumpte and Ms. Kaplan-Mirth were unrepentant. The former said the supremacy sticker on one of his posters was an opportunity to openly discuss racism during the campaign.

He recognized the need to deal with intolerance.

We really need to focus and discuss ways to reduce the harm that people of color experience when they come forward to serve their community.Underlines Mr. Dumpte.

A screenshot of a man threateningly approaching Chrystia Freeland.

A screenshot of a man who threatened Deputy Premier Chrystia Freeland during her visit to Alberta on August 26.

Photo: Screenshot

A disturbing rise in hate

Melanie Thomas, a political scientist at the University of Calgary, is concerned about the rise of rhetoric against politicians and candidates. Harassment against women and people of color is aimed at preventing them from participating in politics, she said. It originates in groups that feel threatened by diversity.

People who believe that God has given them a chance to be superior to others because of their race and gender are very angry and want to resist change.she adds.

Canada needs to assess the role of whites in political institutions moving forward. The problem will only get worse before things improveMs. Thomas was scared.

Angela Wagner, a political scientist at the University of Alberta, has researched political harassment. The women she interviewed were aware of the problem, but that didn’t stop them from applying.

This is not seen as a hindrance, but as a problem, she explains. But it may one day become an obstacle, a very difficult obstacle to cross.

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