Thursday, November 18, 2010

Everyone Hates Julian Fantino

Well, the cancellation of Christie Blatchford's speech at Waterloo has kicked up a mini-kerfuffle, with the University apologizing and Tory MPPs Randy Hillier and Toby Barrett vowing to stand beside the G&M journo when she makes her triumphant return (see an extract from their letter below)

Now, here's the interesting thing: Blatchford was touring behind her new book, Helpless, in which she among other things slags off CPoC candidate for Vaughan Julian Fantino for creating a two tiered justice system during the Caledonia native occupation, where First Nations lawbreakers were set free, and white protesters arrested for legal acts.

So does this mean that provincial Tories Hillier and Barrett support Blatchford's charges against the Conservative candidate for the federal riding of Vaughan?

Interesting that you should ask, because one of the twists and turns in the Caledonia saga involved criminal charges laid against Fantino of attempting to influence a municipal official --Fantino allegedly warned the Mayor of Caledonian and other local officials against supporting activist Gary McHale (now involved in the newly renamed group Against Fantino).

When these charges were dropped, MPP Barrett complained vociferously:

Toby here,

As you may know, we in the Ontario PC Caucus, and people from across Haldimand, have criticized the fact that the Crown has seen fit to drop charges against Julian Fantino.

In fact, this was only one in a series of complaints by Barrett--back in 2008, for example, he wrote of Fantino's failed attempts at intimidation.

Nor was Barrett's ill-feeling towards the then OPP chief an isolated case. As hinted at in the release above, Tim Hudak, head of the PCPO (Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario) and the leader of the province's official opposition, spoke out on behalf of his party about the charges against Fantino:

What we have called for as a PC caucus is for a prosecutor from outside the province to take a look at the evidence and that way people in Caledonia and across our province know that it was done with objectivity.

There is even some suggestion that anti-Fantino emotions existed among federal Conservatives. MP. Diane Finley allegedly signed this anti-Fantino petition back in 2009 (although if you look here you'll see that attempts to confirm her signature failed)

Now, my own take on Caledonia is that Fantino was in tough and did the best he could in a difficult situation. With two excerpts from Helpless now having appeared in the NP (here and here), the worst examples of native law-breaking Blatch seems to have discovered are driving without a seat-belt and riding an ATV without the appropriate license. Not being a Conservative, however, that isn't my problem. If you are a Conservative, you probably hated Julian Fantino's guts...until about a month ago, when the Prime Minister appointed him to your team. And now your trying to pretend that everything is ice-cream.


Unknown said...

Not trying to be the grammar police, just wanted to point out what reads as a really hilarious typo: "...the worst examples of native law-breaking Blatch seems to have discovered are driving without a seat-belt and riding an ATM without the appropriate license."

Riding an ATM?! haha

bigcitylib said...

Thanks. You're the only one that pointed that out.