Canadians must unite for immigrants and refugees. Recent yellow-vested protesters have been seen in small pockets across the country. Along with the federal carbon tax, one of the key talking points of this group is a non-binding United Nations agreement, which is being used as a dog whistle to spread conspiracy theories and stoke fear about immigration. In the city of Swift Current, Sask., Mayor Denis Perrault has been honking and waving at weekly yellow vest protests in front of city hall. According to the local radio station, Mayor Perrault’s intentions were more friendly, rather than political. Instead of honking his horn in tacit support, we need leadership across this country that provides a passionate defence of immigration, multiculturalism and the value of newcomers. The irony is not lost that these Trumpian and xenophobic protests are occurring during the Christian holiday season. Whether it’s the story of Moses or Jesus, it’s about refugee families seeking better lives for their loved ones. Lest we forget that the Ku Klux Klan settled in Saskatchewan in 1926 and gained momentum by 1927 with upwards of 25,000 members, blaming Roman Catholics and immigrants for society’s problems. The same blame game is happening today, while ignoring the fact that Saskatchewan has the lowest minimum wage in the country and among the worst plans for the environment. It’s time for leaders and the people of Canada to unite and defend human decency.
(Human decency does not mean endorsing our current government’s actions.)