How media and politicians play a role in raising the body temperature of activists

News analysis

Grigori Khaskin owns and operates Euro Food Tri-City in Coquitlam, British Columbia, selling food from Eastern Europe such as Ukraine, Romania and the Czech Republic. He hopes it will be the final chapter of his prestigious work career, helping to clean up the Chernobyl nuclear power plant after the 1986 catastrophe and then teaching at Simon Fraser University for 20 years. is.

But at a store that sells Russian-sounding names and Russian products, something unexpected happened to Caskin. After Russia invaded Ukraine, he was the victim of a series of malicious online attacks.

“I was born in Ukraine and lived in Ukraine for the rest of my life before coming to Canada,” he told The Epoch Times. “And now I’m a Russian terrorist and fascist. It’s a bit ironic.”

More than half of Kashkin’s stores and staff are from Ukraine and have been sneaky threats, mainly on the store’s Facebook page, including threats of murder, followed by a campaign aimed at the positive evaluation of the company. ..

A few kilometers away is the Drebo Russian School, which was as threatened as Eurofood, and the school issued an official Canadian statement condemning Russia’s attack on Ukraine. Website..

In nearby Vancouver, the Russian community center was damaged almost as soon as the vandals threw blue and yellow paint on the doors and walls of the theater entrance. Local police are investigating all three situations. So far, no arrests have been made.

In fact, Canada has seen fewer arrests and prosecutions related to the escalation of activists in recent months. It struck the Coastal GasLink workplace near Houston, British Columbia in mid-February, causing millions of dollars in damage. Last summer, arson and vandalism of 68 churches nationwide.

Some scholars argue that actions such as attacks on Russian businesses and assaults on Canadian churches are part of the growth trend of today’s activities. The media ignited the division.

Epoch Times Photo
This TFeb shows damaged heavy equipment. RCMP handouts near Houston, British Columbia, 17th 2022 Photo RCMP is a fierce conflict between workers building a coastal gaslink pipeline in northern British Columbia and a group of about 20 armed with an ax. It states that it is investigating. (Canadian Press / HO, RCMP)

Philip Salzmann, an emeritus professor of anthropology at McGill University, says derogatory labeling has played a role in raising the body temperature of activists.

“All you have to do is label [a particular group or cause] Frighteningly, and politicians are jumping in and doing it enthusiastically. Most political groups have used pandemics to strengthen their power and deprive others of their power. I’ve seen a terrible example of a state of emergency in Canada, “he told The Epoch Times.

“No truck driver was asking for cancellation. They didn’t call it evil. They were certainly not involved in any kind of violence, but. Their elastic castle was clearly a major threat to the Government of Canada. “

Before Freedom Convoy arrived in Ottawa at the end of January, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called Convoy’s truck drivers and supporters “small fringe minorities” with “unacceptable views.”

Many other elected officials, including Ottawa City Council member Diane Deans, despised the free convoy protesters and called them “a threat to our democracy.”

In mid-February, in a controversial move, Trudeau enacted an emergency law and cleared the convoy protest site in downtown Ottawa. This lasted almost three weeks.

In response to the incinerator of the church last year, Trudeau blamed them, but later said he sympathized with the motives for the vandalism, given the history of housing schools.

“I understand the anger at institutions like the federal government and the Catholic Church,” he said at a press conference in July 2021. Be more conscious and involve yourself to do better as a Canadian. “

“Make Canadians Competing Canadians”

Over the last few months, Vancouver has evolved into one of the national hotspots for activists, including regular protests outside the media network in a campaign titled Media is a virus. Marcella Desjarlais, one of the organizers behind the movement, points to a finger that blames journalism today.

“Some of what the media is doing there is spreading fear and causing division,” Dejare said in an interview.

“They make identifiable groups visible, like unprotected and unmasked groups, and they become enemies of the country. We have become terrorists. So, when all we want is our freedom and the right to be respected, it is to make Canadian citizens oppose Canadian citizens. “

Media coverage stigma has been argued for years, but the last two years of COVID coverage, coupled with the pursuit of a Freedom Convoy to remove government-imposed restrictions, have been chosen by the Canadian press. Some claim to be.

Former television director Anita Krishna, a well-established Canadian media director, said she and her colleagues weren’t obliged to adhere to the company’s policies on how to cover the story, but in retrospect they see prejudice creeping up. Say I was able to go to the news room.

Krishna said her network favorably constitutes the cause of social justice, even in the event of vandalism, arson and looting. But the station had a different stance when covering those who protested someone’s vaccination status and being forced to reveal it.

Epoch Times Photo
A woman dances and waving the Canadian flag during a Freedom Convoy protest in Ottawa on February 12, 2022. (Epoch Times / Noechartier)

“No one judges or criticizes anyone in the Black Lives Matter protest, because we are presenting it in a legitimate way for you to do those things. But boy, are we deciding not to be vaccinated, “she told the Epoch Times.

“It’s perfectly safe to say to these protesters: Go home. To those protesters Get a hobby..It’s okay to wear it [TV] Ask if you don’t want to sit beside an unvaccinated colleague. “

Joseph Quesnel, a senior researcher at the Frontier Public Policy Center, who worked in journalism for 15 years, said the media was very afraid to report anything that questioned the dominant story when it came to reporting convoy protests. “. “

“Most of the media’s hostile coverage of the Freedom Convoy was about really attacking the messenger because they didn’t like the message personally,” Quesnel said in an interview.

“They insisted on calling the convoy a protest against vaccination when it was about obligations and restrictions, and it gave people a black-and-white spirit, so it’s your obligation. If I doubted that it was relevant, it was okay to despise or call them selfish without even seeing why they adopted those positions. “

Salzmann states that the “mental gap” is widening in society. This, coupled with the constant social and media message of politically correct discourse, has led to more polarization on the issues that once dissenting people could speak.

“Now you’re not just disagreeing about the facts, you’re expressing evil,” he said. “And I want to cancel you, rather than correct you by having a better discussion, that is, to dismiss you, punish you, isolate you from others, and stay away from civilized society. I’m out. “

Jeff Sandes


Jeff Sandes is a freelance contributor to The Epoch Times based in the Vancouver area.