Canada’s Liberal Party is currently spearheading Motion 103 (M-103) through Parliament. Set for debate in April, the motion calls on the government to “recognize the need to quell the increasing public climate of hate and fear” and “condemn Islamophobia and all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination.” The motion also calls for the establishment of a governmental committee to “undertake a study on how the government could reduce or eliminate systemic racism and religious discrimination including Islamophobia.”
As opposed to a bill (or law), M-103 is a motion. Its purpose is to “raise awareness,” drawing attention to an issue (extolling their own virtue is the Liberal Party’s raison d’être, after all). Although M-103’s passage wouldn’t change Canada’s legal system, the motion is intended to become a progenitor or future legislation.
Why do we need new motions or laws to combat “Islamophobia”? The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (CCRF) and the Criminal Code of Canada already protect Muslims and other religious groups. The motion ostensibly seeks to combat “systemic racism against Muslims”, despite zero evidence that Canadian laws systemically target Muslims. And if there was evidence, why doesn’t Prime Minister Justin Trudeau just change the law? He runs the government.
Moreover, “Islamophobia” is an elusively defined term. The proposed motion fails to explain what Islamophobia actually is. “Islam,” after all, is a religion. Would criticizing its tenets be considered a “phobia”?
Late last year, Liberals amended Canada’s Human Rights Act, again adding vaguely-defined terms to the CCRF: “gender expression” and “gender identity.” In effect, it became a human rights violation to refer to a biological male as a “he,” insofar as he self-identified as a woman. Motion-103 is drafted along the same lines.
Anti-Semitism – which is far more prevalent in Canada than Islamophobia – is omitted in toto. According to 2015 police data, Jews were the identified group most targeted by hate crimes in Canada, with the LGBTQ community coming in second.
The CBC – which recently published an editorial entitled, “Anti-Islamophobia motion offers a chance to take a stand against hatred. Why quibble over semantics?” – is yet to print one (just one!) article on the Muslim Imam in Quebec delivering a sermon in which he prayed for the annihilationof the “accursed” Jews.
And if Quebecois Imams don’t make the CBC’s cut for required reporting, a Toronto Mosque, Masjid Toronto, has a story ripe for the picking. An Imam was caught on video calling for the extermination of the Jews, saying, “O Allah! Purify Al-Aqsa Mosque from the filth of the Jews!”
Recently at Toronto’s Ryerson University, the Muslim Students’ Association and Students for Justice in Palestine Jewish Persecution organized a joint protest, blocking a motion commemorating Holocaust Education Week.
But not to worry, Trudeau has a foolproof plan to combat anti-Semitism via a rapid increase of Muslim refugee admissions to Canada.