Canadian Anti-Hate Network
November 4, 2020
The outcome of the United States election is still uncertain. By all accounts, polling numbers have been proven to be patently false, as what was expected to be a landslide teeters back and forth between Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden.
Despite this, the Canadian far-right milieu is calling for one candidate to be named the victor - Trump.
By all accounts, the official results have not been finalized, but since that did not stop the sitting president from saying that he would be taking the outcome to court. With theories already abound of an unfair and rigged election to unseat Trump, his comments have remained on brand for his self-perceived role as an eternal underdog.
While much of the chatter we’re seeing coming from hate groups is similar, taking a walk through Canada’s extremist ecosystem presents the myriad ways that yesterday’s election is shaping the conspiracies of tomorrow.
Here is how Canada’s hate community is taking the election, so far:
The Skull Masks
Accelerationists maintain a special place in the hate ecosystem. As overt peddlers of not just racism, antisemitism, and misogyny, but an undisguised and unapologetic hatred of all societal order and structure other than their own, most groups in this space spent the lead up to the election saying how little they cared about either eventual outcome. Despite this, however, the election -- and their opinion that it has been co-opted by liberals, the elite, and Jews -- has been the issue du jour.
While one encrypted chat server claimed proudly that “accelerationists won the election,” Canada has quickly been pulled into the fray as multiple neo-Nazi channels are sharing a doctored screencapture of a Canadian Press story about Justin Trudeau vowing “military intervention if Trump Refuses to leave office.”
When contacted, the Canadian Press confirmed that it was fake to the Canadian Anti-Hate Network. Despite being obviously false, and users in these groups commenting that they are unable to find the story, it has persisted and trickled down from the most overt of violent corners of the internet into more mainstream groups.
A fake screenshot being shared across various extremist and mainstream platforms. Source: Telegram
Proud Boys & Proud Boys Canada First
Receiving a large amount of attention due to repeated clashes with counter protesters in American cities and Trump’s call to “stand down and stand by” during the first presidential debate, the Proud Boys drew headlines when it was reported that on the night of the election three members and Bevelyn Beatty had been stabbed in Washington, DC. Several media outlets reported that they were attacked by “BLM protestors,” however, Gavin McInnes made several posts to Parler, including one stating that they were “were not ‘Black Lives Matter members.’ They were street thugs who happened to be coming from Black Lives Matter Plaza.”
Many PB chapters in Canada have remained quiet about the election, however, the page for the Manitoba version has begun re-sharing content asserting the election is being stolen by the Biden team.
The Ontario-based Proud Boys Canada First (PBCF) have also weighed in. A recent splinter from the larger Proud Boys organization, this chapter’s since deleted public channel once boasted that it was more fascist than the normal Proud Boys, which eventually led to a formal breaking away. PBCF continues to use much of the same images and messaging in its propaganda.
Besides also pushing the false Canadian Press headline on Wednesday morning with the caption “Trudeau will use all of his returning ISIS fighters to help him intervene,” on the day of the election, PBCF shared a post to its Telegram page pointing to a stabbing in Hamilton, with the caption “diversity is our strength.” The channel that the post came from included pro and neo-Nazi images and posts and accelerationism alongside headlines and videos that help push its narrative.
Help us keep and eye on these groups and more as the operate across the country: antihate.ca/donate
No Trump controversy would be complete without the perspective of the new age religion that is quickly forming around him. Part conspiracy theory, part cult of personality, QAnon has increasingly become an issue for social media and law enforcement. While platforms are responding to years of criticism for spreading the blatantly false QAnon misinformation with recent crackdowns and bans, a leaked FBI memo first reported on by Yahoo News classified conspiracy theories as potential terror threats, and mentions QAnon by name.
Since election night, Canada’s Qers are weighing in on the results, including some of the most influential personalities in the space. Amazing Polly, aka Polly St George, an Ontario-based QAnon content creator and devoted supporter of Trump, was recently banned from YouTube and Paypal as part of the sweeps. Best known for her part in popularizing the Wayfair branch of Q theory, -- the idea that an expensive piece of online furniture would also include a child sex-slave with delivery -- St. George posted a video online saying she hoped Trump would win, but that his victory would create the “pretext for their riots.”
“It’s totalitarian. There won’t be an area of life which is untouched by the technocratic vision of our future,” she said, laying the blame for any coming unrest at the feet of the globalist “New World Order.”
Despite the inevitable plans for a takeover by “The Cabal,” it appears that at least four candidates that expressed support for QAnon or helped spread its theories have been elected in the USA so far, cementing the idea that the conspiracy theory is now in the mainstream.
Yellow Vests And The So-Called Patriots
Canada’s Yellow Vest and so-called patriot movement remains as incredulous as the others about the result of the election. While many say the fix has been in since the outset, several point to this all being part of an existing long term plan.
The largest official Yellow Vest Canada group was either removed by Facebook or taken down by admins during the summer, however, the most popular public YVC group, which currently sits around 2,000 members, already jumped onto the latest controversy -- that Trump voters were given Sharpie brand pens to spoil their ballots. Election officials told the media that using the marker would not spoil the ballots, though Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich posted a letter on Twitter saying he was looking into the matter after receiving “hundreds of complaints.”
Other posts from today are the more typical focus on a variety of types of actual and conspiratorial corruption, ranging from issues with lockdowns, Islam, and even “placed-Zionist traitors” found in Canada. Post-election coverage among YVC pages has been scant, though posts from election day also warn of a stolen election.
Win or lose, however, the idea that the election could be contested, or even stolen, comes from the candidates themselves. Trump, by all accounts, has once again defied American pollsters and turned a sizable gap between him and his opponent into a dead heat. However, the rhetoric from both sides leading into November all but guaranteed that anything other than a landslide for either candidate would lead to a contested election. Add to that Trump’s early declaration of victory and vows of court challenges -- the stage is set for an already divided country to split even deeper.
While Canada plays no direct part in the election, Trump’s politics and irreverence have become a flashpoint for populists and extremists alike. Whoever enters the oval office will have to contend with that legacy as we hold our breath for whatever raised stakes may come in four years.
Canada’s Far-Right Licks Trump’s Boots
Canada's so-called patriot groups use Trump's language, harass his targets, and defend him when he tries to block lifesaving equipment from Canada during COVID-19.
April 6, 2020
When Trump calls COVID-19 the “Chinese virus” and claims that “shutting down the border” to China saved American lives, Canada’s far-right took notice. Now that’s what they’re calling it too, and it’s playing into their racist narratives that Chinese persons are dirty, dangerous, deserving to die, or collectively responsible for how China’s government handled the outbreak.
Members and supporters of Canada’s hate groups often echo xenophobic rhetoric from the United States, and especially from Trump. When Trump was dismissive of the pandemic, calling it a “Democrat hoax” that conspiracy was quickly spread by the far-right in Canada. They continued to downplay the significance of the pandemic until the reports from Italy made many of them concede that COVID-19 was no hoax. They repeat everything Trump says, including promoting unproven medical treatments. And pushing the racist trope of the diseased immigrant, far-right Canadians have demanded that we close our borders to certain non-white immigrants permanently.
Trump’s name has also been invoked by Canadian QAnon conspiracists who believe that COVID-19 is a ruse to cover for the arrest of a cabal of Satanic pedophiles which they believe includes Justin Trudeau, George Soros, and Tom Hanks, among others.
The far-right in Canada blame the crisis in Canada on either a UN-led conspiracy, or an inept Trudeau government that didn’t close the border to immigrants and refugees coming from “shithole countries” (another alleged Trump phrase used by the Canadian far-right for years now). That many of those who returned to Canada from overseas are in fact Canadians themselves is irrelevant to racists:
“News heading in Toronto Sun says to expect "Social Distancing" as VIRUS spreads. Hmmmmmmmmmm. Fatal results of multi-cult race-mixing ????? If it makes even those in our tough White Right camp nervous........imagine how our forever fence-sitting relatives feel.....perhaps messing their pants in absolute fear ? Too bad eh .”
At least one individual in Waterloo, Ontario has taken it upon themselves to put up flyers claiming that COVID-19 affects races differently and suggests that Canada would “be a safer place . . . if it had a lower concentration of Asian people.”
Criticisms of the actions of the Chinese government are fair game. But when blame, disgust, and retribution are attributed to individuals because they are Chinese (which is what happens when you label it the “Chinese virus”), it leads to people being hurt. Some members of far-right groups are bragging about harassing Chinese people. Other hate groups have used the crisis to attack the concept of immigration and multiculturalism in flyering campaigns found a number of Canadian cities including Edmonton and Port Credit, including ones that read “Open Borders Spread Disease," “Migrants Accepted, Now We’re Infected,
and “Nationalism Would Have Prevented This,” amongst others. Calgary police are investigating threats to a Chinese restaurant they believe at linked to COVID-19.
Is Trumps rhetoric to blame? Only partly.
For years the far-right in Canada have mimicked extremist groups from outside of the country as vehicles for home-grown racism. Anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim movements Pegida Canada and the Soldiers of Odin (as well as their subsequent splinter groups) are attempts to copy European groups. American-based militias such as the III%ers have found a fertile home in Canada among Islamophobes who invoke the same conspiracy theories as their American counterparts. European identitarians and American accelerationists have gained a significant foothold in the country; examples include ID Canada, the Base, and AWD. Even movements such as the French Yellow Vests have been co-opted by Canadian groups and bastardized into anti-immigrant and anti-refugee movements in Canada.
Canada’s far-right activity isn’t simply the result of Trump. The international influence of anti-Muslim figures and groups from Europe, a backlash against the 2015 Trudeau election, and anti-Muslim fearmongering domestically had already set the stage. The election of Trump invigorated them, Rebel Media and more mainstream fearmongering against anti-Islamophobia motion 103 gave them a cause, and they have been on the streets ever since.
The rise of far-right movements is an international phenomenon in which we are not only victims, but contributors. Unfortunately, Canada has been a key exporter of propaganda and influential figures in the far-right and alt-right neo-Nazi movements. For example: Gavin McInnes, Stefan Molyneux, Lauren Southern and Faith Goldy-Bazos are all Canadian; Richard Spencer launched his first alt-right website when he was living in Toronto; and Montreal-man Gabriel Sohier Chaput was one of the key administrators of the pro-terrorism Iron March forum that gave rise to a new wave of neo-Nazi terrorism through groups like AWD.
But Trump's influence on Canada in particular is difficult to miss. The so-called patriot groups worship Trump. For years they’ve been saying they hope the United States invade Canada to overthrow the government. Most recently, members of groups like Yellow Vests of Alberta are defending Trump for his attempts to block N95 masks – much needed medical equipment for front-line medical workers during COVID-19 – from reaching Canada.
“don’t blame him, hes taking care of his country first,we coulduse a leader like him”
“Wasn’t Trudeau the one who shut down the logging industry?? Maybe Trump is trying to wake up Canadians”
This is part of a series of articles and investigations into trends and new developments among Canada’s hate movements. We would like to thank an anonymous donor and the Urban Alliance on Race Relations for supporting this project.