While police zero in on who’s been behind several drops of racist flyers, members of the faith community are showing solidarity and speaking out against hatred. At a small rally at Churchill Square organizer Ahmed Abdukadir said police have a suspicion on who’s been distributing the hateful flyers, and are asking for the public’s help to further solve the case.
Abdukadir said there are fears that a lack of action will lead to an escalation of the hatred. “If we don’t speak out right now some one might act crazy and do something, and say this action is condoned by everybody. What we want to do is show the Muslim community that all Edmontonians are standing collectively and rejecting this hate.”
Aboriginal leaders left flags that were blessed, and then signed by faith leaders from several communities. “I’m always humbled by the message of the Indigenous people,” said Sadique Pathan, an Iman at the El Rashid Mosque.
“I think we can learn so much from the elders and of course we have the other faiths, the Christian and the Jewish and also the others including the Hindu and Sihk communities who’ve also become victims of similar hate.”
“I really do believe the silent majority is becoming more mobilized and is speaking. This is a great sign. You see people from all faiths and all backgrounds raising their voice and saying no to this hate, no to that hate, no to every form of hate so this is very encouraging.”
The most recent flyer drop happened in the north Edmonton community of Evansdale, which is represented by Coun. Dave Loken. He hasn’t seen that particular flyer, but said it is the talk of several groups including a Muslim – Christian dialogues organization that wants to show solidarity the Muslim community.
“I’ve seen and heard enough of about it, I probably don’t need to get my hands on one but it’s disturbing it happens anywhere in this city, but when you’re the representative in that area you take that really personally, and it’s disgusting and it’s disappointing.”
“Police are investigating,” Loken said. “Hopefully they’ll catch the persons or people and they’ll be able to shed a little light on why, but the important part is even if these guys never get caught the important part is how we react, and how that we act.”
Loken said a formal motion is coming to city council. It’s being crafted by Coun. Bev Esslinger and Coun. Moe Banga, who front council’s multi-cultural initiative. The motion will target the racist flyers.