No, the Canadian election day is not an anti-Semitic conspiracy
Election Day is Oct 21. This year, the date coincides with Shemini Atzeret, one of several “High Holidays” festival dates in the annual Jewish calendar, at the tail end of the harvest festival called Sukkot, but which is largely honoured in the breach of its halachic (Jewishly legal) detail by all but Orthodox Jews (about 75,000 in Canada).
By an unusual coincidence, the Conservative nominee for Toronto’s Eglinton-Lawrence riding (a densely Jewish riding) happens to be an Orthodox Jewish woman, Chani Aryeh-Bain. Which means that neither she nor a significant number of her constituents will be able to cast their vote on that day.
Aryeh-Bain said that the religious constraint caused her disadvantage. She won’t be able to “get the vote out” with calls, texts or home visits. Nor can she keep her office open on election day. Aryeh-Bain and Ira Walfish, a Jewish voter, called upon the Federal Court of Canada to order the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) to move the election day back a week. B’nai Brith Canada, a Jewish advocacy group, was granted intervenor status in the case. Colin Feasby, their representative, pitched Aryeh-Bain’s claims against a dramatic backdrop of historical anti-Semitism: “[I]n the context of historical oppression of Jews, it sends a message to the broader Canadian society that this minority community and their beliefs do not count and their democratic rights are not worthy of protection.”
It says nothing of the kind, and nobody should be alleging anti-Jewish conspiracy theories. Canada’s fixed election dates are set by an algorithm. Algorithms do not “send messages” of any kind. We have before us an election date, innocently arrived at after all major holidays of all major religions have been accounted for, that places a certain burden of inconvenience on one candidate and many of her supporters.
A federal election called on Yom Kippur, of primordial importance to the vast majority of Canadian Jews, would be insulting to all Jews. A federal election called on Shemini Atzeret is something else entirely. An extremely tiny segment of the general Jewish population will be slightly inconvenienced, but will not be impeded from participating fully in the election. Going nuclear—interpreting this coincidence as a strongly implied sign of anti-Semitism—is irresponsible. There is enough real anti-Semitism available in non-governmental quarters to condemn without looking for it in government, where it does not exist.
The federal court was sympathetic to Aryeh-Bain and ordered the CEO to review his decision not to alter the date of the election. The Federal Court ruled “… This judicial review is granted as the overall decision of the CEO does not demonstrate the hallmarks of transparency, intelligibility and justification, as it is not possible to determine if he undertook the necessary proportionate balancing between the applicant’s charter rights and the exercise of his statutory duty.”
The task before them was to evaluate the probably impact of the burden in the light of Aryeh-Bain’s Charter rights. In terms of voting, there is no real burden at all. Anyone can vote in an advance poll, and hundreds of thousands of Canadians do this routinely in order to accommodate vacations, medical treatments, out-of-town business engagements and a hundred other reasons. So the real question is whether texts, emails, home visits and the like on voting day are so crucial to one’s person’s election prospects that an election date for millions of Canadians should be changed, doubtless at considerable expense, to accommodate her. Are there no gentiles helping on her campaign that could keep the office open and do some texting and emailing? Is this inconvenience existential to her chances for election?
If Shemini Atzeret can trigger a reset of an election date, what else could? When the federal government adopted fixed dates for elections, they anticipated possible collisions of a sensitive kind by stipulating that if a scheduled date is “in conflict with a day of cultural or religious significance,” a decision may be taken to move the date forward. How typically vague, and what a slippery slope this could result in.
Can anyone define what “cultural significance” means? How about Ramadan, whose yearly occurrence shifts around on our calendar, with its month-long obligation to fast during daylight hours? Is it fair to ask a candidate to campaign when she is hungry and tired? Is it fair to burden Muslims who need to conserve their strength during the day by having them trek to the poll? Or, for another example, there are 634 First Nations. Each of them has its own cultural customs and significant dates. What if an election coincides with one of them?
Most surprising to me is that Aryeh-Bain and her followers do not appreciate the irony of their situation. There is not a single injunction against activity on Shemini Atzeret that is not also applicable to every single Shabbat in the year. Which means that Aryeh-Bain—if elected—would never be available for travel or party duty of any kind from every sundown Friday night to sundown Saturday night. Naturally normal meetings are not scheduled on weekends. But often rallies and other special events are. There might be many occasions when a political crisis demanded a telephone call or meeting on a Saturday, but she wouldn’t be able to talk, let alone meet. These constraints won’t matter to the Orthodox Jews who are her political base, but she would be serving a wider constituency. Perhaps they might feel short-changed, just as she feels short-changed now.
You can’t please all the people all the time, nor should governments assume they can. A spirit of reason and compromise should always be the order of the day. As a Jew who is wholly committed to fighting anti-Semitism wherever I see a real threat to my community, I am a bit embarrassed when professional advocates, who should know the difference, make a mountain out of a molehill. The election date should stand, and Ms. Aryeh-Bain should work around it, just as she works around so many other claims on her attention 52 Shabbats a year.
Monday’s march for the 2nd Amendment in Richmond, Virginia went off without a hitch. Contrary to early reports that “swarms” of “white nationalists” would be descending upon the Virginia state capitol to protest gun control laws enacted by the commonwealth’s General Assembly, most—if not all—of the gun rights activists remained orderly and self-composed.
Gun rights marchers expelled speakers who called for violence. In one instance, an antifa member “Goad Gatsby” called out a neo-Nazi named Jovi Val, who allegedly wore a swastika to the event.
Despite the peaceful protest, NBC reporters portrayed the event in negative terms, and even lied about it. MSNBC’s Chris Hayes claimed in a broadcast that the rally sent an “explicit and implicit message” of “don’t you dare enact our policies, if you do, we will use these guns against you.” If anything, the Framers would be proud of seeing Americans generations ahead of them stand up for their God-given rights to defend themselves against the tyranny of an overbearing government.
The media’s message is that standing up for your rights is a violent action in and of itself—it’s a narrative that continues to be propped up. Writing for the men’s publication, disgraced New Yorker fact-checker Talia Lavin says that “the threat of violence in Richmond,” and the few arrests of alleged neo-Nazis planning violence that were made prior to the event “sent other groups into hiding.”
A Canadian neo-Nazi is currently being prosecuted for his alleged intention to commit violence in Richmond. He recorded a video calling for “violent revolution” ahead of his failed attempt to participate in the gun rights rally.
According to Lavin’s spin, the thousands of protesters attending the rally (which includes activists from the Black Panthers movement, pro-gay rights libertarians, 2nd wave feminists, and many others who support the right to bear arms) only “grumblingly abided” Governor Ralph Northam’s state of emergency declaration. The description she uses to describe the marchers is biased, to say the least:
“But just outside the legions of police barricades, twice that number of people roamed the streets of Richmond bearing a bristling mass of rifles, from AR-15s to massive Barrett sniper rifles. Some wore skull masks; others waved Confederate flags. Members of hate groups like the League of the South and the American Guard, as well as the Proud Boys, mingled openly; some of the latter were wearing patches that said “RWDS”—an acronym for “Right-Wing Death Squad.” Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones gave a speech from a Terradyne battle tank.”
A Terradyne “battle tank”? Really?
Firstly, the Terradyne is a glorified SUV. And second, even APCs aren’t tanks. Those BearCats the police use? Yeah, those aren’t tanks either. Come on, journalists—you can’t keep confusing Remington 870s for AR-15s.
Digression aside, the mention of “skull masks,” “massive Barrett sniper rifles,” and “Confederate flags” paints a less-than-friendly picture of the march. But as video footage of the march itself exists, it’s a false depiction of a peaceful event that’s very easily dispelled. We can watch the footage too, you know.
One can see now why Lavin was forced to resign from her position as fact-checker at the New Yorker after falsely accusing an Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent of having a Nazi tattoo. The tattoo in question was a Maltese Cross, often seen in paramedic and firefighter insignias. One wonders if she will issue a correction properly describing the event from an unbiased, fact-based perspective.
Lavin then concedes, or more accurately laments, the fact that no one was shot at the event, describing it as “a frankly extraordinary turn of events given the sheer amount of weaponry, the density of the crowd, and the weapons stuffed casually into backpacks or held loosely in the crooks of pale arms.”
“Pale arms.” The subtext is clear: white people who stand up for their right to self-determination are prone to acts of violence.
There’s an old saying made popular by gun rights activists that holds true, especially following the media’s inability to reconcile the abundance of firearms with the lack of violence: an armed society is a polite society.
Diverging, or at least pretending to diverge from the mainstream view that “man with guns = bad,” Lavin opines that both “fringe-right publications” as well as the mainstream media declared the event a “peaceful protest.” Why, it seems that reality may indeed have a conservative bias. None of this matters to Lavin, of course, who argues that violence was only “narrowly averted” because some wingnuts from a neo-Nazi organization called The Base were arrested prior to the event.
This is, of course, a poor read on the event. While neo-Nazis may have in fact been planning to enact violence at the Virginia state capitol, the fact remains that the estimated 22,000 people who walked for their right to bear arms had nothing but peaceful intentions. Also worth noting is the fact that the 22,000 figure, provided by Richmond authorities, is whittled down to a mere 6,000 by Lavin in her piece. Surely giving readers the impression that more than a few thousand people care about their 2nd Amendment rights is a fact that would fly in the face of her narrative that it’s an issue only dangerous neo-Nazi skull masks care about.
The piece is full of “what ifs” and “could haves”—what if The Base members weren’t arrested? They could’ve killed thousands of people, surely. Wouldn’t that feed ratings for an entire news cycle?
“There was, it was true, an absence of immediate bloodshed,” continues Lavin. “But what abounded, in that armed and insurrectionist sea of humanity, was the promise that bloodshed might happen at any time, should the will of the mob be thwarted.”
The promise of bloodshed isn’t a promise being made by those defending the 2nd Amendment. As the events in Waco and Ruby Ridge tell us, the only real bloodshed would be caused by a government overreaching and tyrannical in its nature. The right to bear arms is what prevents such violence from being enacted unto the citizenry. Thus always to Tyrants.
Jessica Yaniv was arrested for the assault of a Canadian journalist on over the weekend. According to Keean Bexte, the journalist who was assaulted by Yaniv on camera outside of the B.C. courts on January 14, 2020, Yaniv spent time behind bars on the charge of assault. She may face up to five years for the assault.
There was widespread speculation that Yaniv was arrested over the weekend, but The Post Millennial and other outlets were unable to verify the claims at the time. Bexte, being the alleged victim in this particular case, was able to confirm the arrest Wednesday afternoon.
When reached for comment, Bexte said, “Yaniv has been ordered to cease all contact with me, both directly and indirectly. I can’t wait for the day when Yaniv is put away for the long haul. He is dangerous and unpredictable.”
Even if Yaniv is behind bars, the civil litigations brought by Bexte and Hamm against Yaniv for assault and defamation respectively can proceed. According to Bexte, Yaniv would be court-ordered to appear for the civil litigations as planned.
Yaniv was released back into the community after the arrest and will appear in court in February. She will also appear in court in February for two prohibited weapons charges.
Note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly identified the JCCF as representing Amy Eileen Hamm in litigation. Hamm is being represented by Carey Linde and lawyer Jay Cameron. The Post Millennial regrets the error.
The Philadelphia Flyers’ beloved mascot Gritty is being investigated by police after a father claimed that the big orange furry monster punched his 13-year-old son in the back.
Chris Greenwell took his son Brandon to the Wells Fargo Center for a November meet and greet photoshoot with the beloved, google-eyed mascot.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Greenwell claims that “Brandon playfully patted the mascot on the head after the photo was taken. As Brandon walked away, Gritty got out of his chair, ‘took a running start,’ and ‘punched my son as hard as he could,’ Greenwell said Wednesday.”
“We took Mr. Greenwell’s allegations seriously and conducted a thorough investigation that found nothing to support this claim,” said a spokesperson for the Philidelphia Flyers.
A police spokesperson has described the alleged incident as a possible “physical assault” that occurred “during a photoshoot with 13-year-old white male and Flyers mascot Gritty. The investigation is active and on-going.”
The hashtag #FreeGritty is now trending on Twitter.
The Ontario teachers’ strikes are proving to be more acrimonious than anyone expected. Elementary teachers have now opted out of writing report cards and have already begun to engage in rotating strikes.
The Ontario government, on the other hand, have offered up to $60 per day for parents who are feeling the fiscal consequences of the strike, and rumours of back to work legislation is being floated around the corridors of Queen’s Park.
The teachers’ strikes are deeply consequential and have affected the day-to-day lives of 13 million Ontarians who live in the most populace province in Canada. Due to the vast impact this strike, and the mainstream media’s lack of balance in the coverage (often siding with the unions and tecahers), The Post Millennial has compiled a list of things you need to know about the Ontario teachers’ strikes.
1. Ontario’s teachers are among the highest paid in the country
Ontario’s teachers are among the best paid in the country. In the Greater Toronto Area, for instance, top teachers can expect to get paid up to $96,000 a year. The average salary for a teachers in Ontario is $89,300 for elementary teachers and $92,900 for high school teachers. In contrast, the average Ontarian earns $55,000 per year.
2. Ontario teachers are taking more and more sick days
A 2017 study found that teachers have been taking more and more sick days over the past five years. On average, sick days have increased by over 30 percent. In 2020, another report revealed even starker results with teachers taking 70 percent more sick days than over a decade ago.
3. Teachers get a whole lot of time off
Ontario’s teacher’s have a pretty great job. Not only do they get paid a wage that is far higher than the average Ontarian, they also get a lot of time off. Due to breaks in the school year, teachers are allowed three whole months off, on top of the aforementioned sick days.
4. Teachers’ Unions are spending big bucks to win the PR war
So far, the OSSTF has spent $336,389 on Facebook ads alone. These ads usually attack the Ford government and have been running since June. In one week alone, they spent over $40,000. They’re also waging a war of words against Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce through the mainstream press.
5. The Ontario government has already made concessions, but unions won’t meet in the middle
Premier Doug Ford has offered numerous concessions to the teachers’ unions from the government’s initial demands. Ford, for example, offered to meet the teachers half-way on classroom size. This, however, was not good enough for the teachers, and they walked away from the negotiation table. They’re also refusing to do report cards and help out in after school activities, despite claiming the strikes are primarily for the students, not their pay cheques.
6. Ontario’s students are flunking math tests
If you’re going to teach mathematics to a new generation of students, you should probably have to prove that you have some basic ability to do so. This hardly unreasonable request, however, created some tension with the teachers’ unions. Despite EQAO tests showing all-time lows, the unions were upset that teachers had to score at least 70 percent in a math test.
7. Ontario’s debt is astronomically high
After a decade of Liberal government, Ontario’s debt stands at over $350,000,000,000. This figure constitutes one of the highest sub-national debts in the world. Due to this, the Ford government is trying to cut back public sector salaries, which means slowing down the rate at which teachers are paid. Teachers in Ontario also have what many experts consider to be a great pension package.