For immediate release
AFT denounces Trudeau’s appointment of a religious fundamentalist to the role of combatting “Islamophobia”
Montreal, 2nd February 2023 — Atheist Freethinkers (LPA-AFT), an association which defends the rights of atheists and promotes secularism, denounces the appointment, by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, of Amira Elghawaby to the role of Canada’s “Special Representative on Combatting Islamophobia.” As a Muslim fundamentalist, fiercely opposed to secularism and resolutely refusing to understand the historical situation of Quebec, Ms. Elghawaby is utterly unsuited for this position. Furthermore, this position is itself a fraud.
Justin Trudeau demonstrates once again his resolutely pro-religion bias and reveals the same reluctance he showed following the murder of Samuel Paty in France: to guarantee freedom of speech, including the right of everyone to criticize religions.
By instituting a day to recognize the tendentious and very ambiguous concept of “Islamophobia,” by creating such a position, by appointing Ms. Elghawaby to it and by asserting that he would have appointed her even if he had known of her previous statements, Mr. Trudeau indirectly endorses the idea of an alleged link between State secularism, supported by a majority of Quebecers, and certain unfortunate acts of violence against Muslims.
By encouraging this absolutely unjustified association of ideas, Mr. Trudeau thus supports, using Ms. Elghawaby as an intermediary, the convictions defended by all religious fundamentalists on the planet and by theocratic totalitarian countries. This manœuvre is extremely dishonest because, if indeed there is a link between secularism and violence, it is precisely in the opposite direction. Secular legislation such as Bill 21, by curbing religious influence within the State, helps to reduce social tensions, reassuring the population and thus reducing the risk of acts of violence.
The context of this appointment is very revealing—mere days before the anniversary of the massacre at the Grand Mosque of Quebec and in the midst of a controversy, sparked by Trudeau himself, about the notwithstanding clause in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The Prime Minister cynically seeks to stir up the anti-Quebec and anti-secular prejudices prevalent in an electorate, mainly in Ontario, whose votes will be very precious to him in the next election.
The Prime Minister’s inappropriate and irresponsible action sows discord that risks engendering the very violence which he claims to be fighting.
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