Calgary Herald - - NP - NICK EAGLAND

VAN­COU­VER • A for­mer Con­ser­va­tive cab­i­net min­is­ter re­signed from both the Telus board of di­rec­tors and a busi­ness law firm on Wed­nes­day after pub­licly deny­ing there is sys­temic racism in Canada.

Stock­well Day was on a CBC Power & Pol­i­tics panel Tues­day dis­cussing Prime Min­is­ter Justin Trudeau’s re­sponse to protests over the po­lice killing of Ge­orge Floyd, a 46-year-old black man.

Day said sys­temic racism was not an is­sue in Canada and com­pared peo­ple’s ex­pe­ri­ences of racism here to him be­ing mocked for wear­ing glasses as a child.

Wed­nes­day, Telus an­nounced it had ac­cepted Day’s res­ig­na­tion from the board. “The views ex­pressed by Mr. Day dur­ing yes­ter­day’s broad­cast of Power & Pol­i­tics are not re­flec­tive of the val­ues and be­liefs of our or­ga­ni­za­tion,” Telus said. Day had been on the board since 2011.

Soon after, Teresa Du­fort, part­ner and CEO at Mcmil­lan LLP, re­leased a state­ment say­ing the law firm had ac­cepted Day’s res­ig­na­tion as a strate­gic ad­viser.

Day has also stepped down as a com­men­ta­tor on CBC.

Since Floyd’s death on May 25, protests over po­lice bru­tal­ity against black Amer­i­cans have been held across the U.S. with many turn­ing violent as po­lice re­spond to van­dal­ism and loot­ing, but also peace­ful as­sem­blies, with tear gas, ba­tons and rub­ber bul­lets.

“We all watch in hor­ror and con­ster­na­tion (at) what’s go­ing on in the United States,” Trudeau said Tues­day.

“It is a time to pull peo­ple to­gether but it is a time to lis­ten, it is a time to learn what in­jus­tices con­tinue de­spite progress over years and decades. But it is a time for us as Cana­di­ans to rec­og­nize that we, too, have our chal­lenges.”

On Power & Pol­i­tics, Day said that he re­jected “the prime min­is­ter in­sin­u­at­ing that all Cana­di­ans are some­how racist be­cause our sys­tem is sys­tem­i­cally racist.”

“The Cana­dian sys­tem is built and ev­ery day func­tions to de­fend the rights of mi­nori­ties, and it should, and we cel­e­brate that,” he said.

Day said that while there are a “few id­iot racists” in Canada, he be­lieves most Cana­di­ans are not racist.

Day did not im­me­di­ately re­spond to a re­quest for com­ment on Wed­nes­day.

“It’s dif­fi­cult to be able to as­sert that there isn’t racism as a white per­son, right?” asked the show’s host, Vassy Kape­los. Day re­sponded that among his Cana­dian friends, rel­a­tives and ad­ver­saries, most are not racist. He added that Cana­di­ans should be more sen­si­tive about “hurt­ing or in­sult­ing peo­ple.”

“Should I have gone through school be­ing mocked be­cause I had glasses and was called ‘four eyes,’ and be­cause (of) the oc­cu­pa­tion of my par­ents? Should I have been mocked for all that? No, of course not,” Day said.

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