Turkish Community's warnings are falling on deaf ears

Has it become the new Canadian policy to condone hatred?

While proudly identifying Canada as a world leader in multicultural policy and assuming the role of one of the most democratic nations on the topic, Canadian federal and provincial parliaments continue to ignore the seeds of hate and racism being planted against the Turkish community.

Quebec provincial parliament and government, relying solely on one-sided information and disregarding the Turkish community's requests to be heard, went ahead and recognized April 24 as the day of the so-called Armenian Genocide (Bizim Anadolu, January 15, 2004). In fact, April 24 is the date when Armenian terrorists in Istanbul were arrested by the Ottoman government of the time, and sent to other towns of the empire inside Anatolia.

Subsequently, on April 21, 2004, Canadian Federal Parliament, also refusing to listen to the concerns of Turkish Canadians before coming to a decision, proceeded to accept the war-time national security measures of the Ottoman Empire, the examples of which have been witnessed throughout the history everywhere, as the "Armenian Genocide" (Bizim Anadolu, May 15, 2004). Furthermore, Canadian government, from the mouth of the Prime Minister Stephen Harper, declared the dirty aggressions that took place in Anatolia in 1915, the rightful struggle of Turks to defend their homeland against the invading armies and the rebellion of Armenians, as a "genocide."

Publicly-funded broadcasters such as the CBC and Radio Canada, dismissing the wish of the Turkish Community to voice their concerns on the topics that are of great interest to them, commit discrimination and racism on their radio and television programs with one-sided theories. These programs incite hate against the Turkish Canadians, slander their history and ancestry, and condemn Turkish people in the public opinion of the Canadians at large.

Canadian schools, making exclusive use of the biased narratives of another ethnic community, attempt to give the students inaccurate information and teach our children untruthful versions of history (Bizim Anadolu, January 15 / February 15 2008). In public meetings related to this issue, while the other side is allowed to make extensive one-sided presentations using false documents, Turkish Canadians are either excluded altogether, or the rights of representatives of the Turkish community are cut short. Requests made on behalf of the Turkish community to meet with the school officials and government ministers are either denied or ignored completely.

Turkish Canadian students are exposed to insults, threats and bullying of the children of an ethnic community who chooses to raise their youth with feelings of hatred and racism. Having passed legislations and recognitions that promote bias, Canadian parliaments and governments allow and enable such hatred and discrimination to take place in schools.

Members of the Turkish community, who only wish to live in peace, harmony and safety, without being subjected to racist attacks, discrimination, hate and harassment, are asking the top politicians and officials in Canada to listen to their voices.

Every year, as April 24 approaches, hate propaganda intensifies in the form of inflammatory and provocative posters in various public places including universities. This kind of animosity greatly worries Turkish Canadians and they feel that their well-being and their children's future, even in a multicultural society like Canada, is at risk. Members of the Turkish community of Canada are asking Canadian authorities to remember that they too are citizens of this country and to put an end to this perpetual seeding of hatred against them.

Don't you think they have every right to demand this?

Notre Anatolie

April 2008

Old editorials:
Open Letter to the President of The National Ethnic Press and Media Council of Canada
Instead of hate, try understanding and tolerance