Opinion

Drop The ‘Islamophobia’ Narrative

David Krayden Ottawa Bureau Chief

The unreal word of “Islamophobia” was all over the Canadian media on Monday as it covered the very real story of a Quebec City mosque shooting attack of the night before.

Even before the facts were known and even while the Quebec provincial police, who did not seem to have a grip on the investigation, looked ridiculous by first identifying two assailants and then saying that one of them was only a witness, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had already written his narrative.  This was clearly his long-awaited opportunity to demonstrate that Islamophobia was a growing menace to Canadian society and that Muslims were now the targets and not the progenitors of terrorism.

Trudeau was all eloquence in the Canadian Parliament, which had just resumed after its Christmas break.  After describing the mosque attack as “a despicable act of terror,” Trudeau laid his emotions bare:  “To the more than 1 million Canadians who profess the Muslim faith, I want to say directly: we are with you; 36 million hearts are breaking with yours.”

Well, that’s all fine but I just wish Trudeau could share just a fraction of this pain when he is describing the preponderance of terrorist attacks conducted by Muslims and not just the rare ones endured by this religious community.  Instead Trudeau likes to tell us that Canada is not a war with ISIS and even arrived at the incredible conclusion that “when you kill your enemies, they win.”  Only Justin could say that without being engulfed by either uncontrolled laughter or enraged military personnel who have risked their lives killing our enemies.

And Trudeau’s acolytes in the Canadian media were ready with their activist journalism as news anchors on all networks sang from the Islamophobia song sheet and repeatedly suggested that the mosque shooting illustrated larger trends and darker shadows in Canadian society.  Some talking head from the National Council of Canadian Muslims went on CTV’s Newsnet today to advocate for the elimination of “divisive political rhetoric” in Canada so that only “voices of unity” would remain.

Let’s get real:  divisive political rhetoric happens to be a prerequisite for democratic government.  Otherwise you have a one-party state.  Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia both eliminated divisive political rhetoric and only broadcast voices of unity.

Make no mistake, no matter who committed this atrocious act, it remains an atrocious act.  But it should not bolster arguments that are currently being advanced in Canada for the promulgation of Islamophobic hate laws that would amount to little more than naked censorship of any speech that is vaguely critical radical Islamic terror and criminalize those who say or write it.

There were attempts made throughout the day to conflate the shooting with President Donald Trump’s travel ban – even if such a causal link is not just tenuous but absurd.  Why would an anti-Muslim fanatic be motivated to attack a mosque because potential terrorists are being barred from entering the U.S.?  Even the leader of the quasi-socialist New Democratic Party, Thomas Mulcair, who had recently introduced an Islamophobia motion in the House of Commons, tried to make the connection during Monday’s Question Period when Members of Parliament may asked questions of the prime minister.

Trudeau, who occasionally senses the need for prudence, would not endorse Mulcair’s condemnation of the temporary ban of visitors from seven scheduled countries.

But even Trudeau has his moments of clarity.

But having covered him from his political beginning, I can tell you that those moments are rare for this son of a former prime minister who was just as revered and despised as the current model.   He never misses an opportunity – just as Barack Obama did – to avoid using the three words “radical Islamic terror” in the same breath.  His comprehension of the world is not merely naïve; it is foolishly pusillanimous.

What is so mind-numbingly absurd about this obeisance to all things Muslim is that the politicians who participate in this charade are the first ones that an Islamic state based in Sharia law would target.  There would be little tolerance for the sybaritic tastes of the Canadian Left from Muslim rule.

But plenty of voices of unity.

And never a note of divisive political rhetoric.

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