There’s video evidence of white supremacists physically attacking demonstrators at an anti-racism rally in Red Deer yesterday, but the RCMP confirmed this morning that they will not pursue any charges.
City News Edmonton was in Red Deer to cover the rally and captured footage of assaults by members of a counter-protest organized by Pat King, co-founder of Alberta’s Wexit Party. In Facebook videos he posted in the days leading up to the protest, King had promised violence against any demonstrators who came to Red Deer. “That’s patriots kicking antifa out of their towns!” said King in one broadcast.
King is a minor fixture in Alberta’s far-right scene, and frequently posts white supremacist and anti-Semitic content online.
During the City News broadcast, one of the attackers is seen lunging at and striking a demonstrator after that person attempts to present some paperwork. According to the victim’s partner, the paperwork was, ironically, a restraining order against King.
Pictured: one of the assaults captured on video by City News reporters at the Red Deer anti-racism rally
RCMP did not intercede to protect the demonstrators or remove the people who assaulted them. According to Justice Minister Kaycee Madu at a press conference this morning, the RCMP were late to the event because they went to the wrong venue. “I have faith and confidence in the ability of the RCMP to deal with incidents like this,” said the minister. He did not explain why charges were not laid against the attackers.
Rhetoric from conservative politicians about Black Lives Matter, antifa, and anti-racist protestors being extremists and terrorists has become commonplace, piggy-backing on narratives from Trump and the American conservative movement. Minister Madu, who railed online against a Black Lives Matter rally earlier this summer, has dabbled in it himself. Duncan from the Progress Report called in to the minister’s press conference this morning to inquire about that, but the government refused to take our questions.
After last weekend’s public outcry against cuts to AISH (Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped, a provincial program that provides meagre benefits to those who are medically unable to work), Minister Rajan Sawhney stepped up to assure the public that no cuts to AISH were going to happen on her watch. She was immediately made a liar by the Premier, who confirmed to the media last Tuesday that the UCP are looking at ways to cut people off from the benefits. Kenney’s proxy and ‘issues manager’ Matt Wolf explained further online, pointing to anxiety disorders and severe ADHD as examples of the conditions the UCP believes are not disabling enough to justify AISH support.
Writing for the Narwhal, Grace Wark of the Alberta Wilderness Association argues that the provincial plan to sell off parks is short-sighted--and may have ecologically dangerous consequences.
Yet another story of bizarre behavior from Alberta’s Minister of Health Tyler Shandro is in the news this week, as Calgary city councillor Diane Colley-Urquhart alleges the minister castigated her in a belligerent phone call about Colley-Urquhart’s opposition to UCP plans to centralize 911 dispatch services. “It is not appropriate for a minister of the Crown, indeed any politician, to attempt to intimidate another politician,” said Mayor Nenshi.
Riding high in the polls, BC Premier John Horgan has called the next BC election several months early. The snap election call is likely a response to foot-dragging from the BC Greens, who are not supporting some bills from the NDs, claiming that they don’t believe it’s appropriate to legislate on other issues during the COVID crisis. The NDP hope to pick up additional seats so that they are no longer reliant on the Greens to have a majority in the legislature.
- Outspoken critic of the UCP Dr. Jillian Ratti is the latest Alberta doctor to publicly announce they are leaving Alberta to seek work elsewhere, as Tyler Shandro’s campaign to cut doctor compensation continues. Hundreds of clinics across the province are closing or laying off staff, according to the Alberta Medical Association. Kim Siever has a running tally of communities losing doctors on his blog.
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