Duelling protest groups to face off at Danforth shooting site
An event called "True Patriots Vigil For Victims Of Terrorism" is scheduled to take place this Sunday near the site of last month's tragic shooting in Toronto's Greektown neighbourhood — and, while it sounds like a nice memorial service, it might not actually be.
The event is being planned by a group called Canadian Combat Coalition National (CCCN), which purports to "oppose mass immigration, open borders, New World Order and Sharia Law."
Almost 2,500 members strong, it's not a tiny chunk of people, fringe as what the beliefs it promotes may seem, and the fact that this group is hosting an event on the Danforth is raising concern among locals.
"On this coming Sunday the 9th at 3 PM, a false 'vigil' is planned for the Greektown shooting to be held at our community's memorial," wrote Toronto resident Stew MacDonald on Facebook of the CCCN event.
"The group hosting this event, the 'Canadian Combat Coalition" is an unsavory sort, as the name and logo imply," he continued. "They are NOT local community members, many aren't even from Toronto -- they are trying to milk and abuse this tragedy, which we all know was not an organized terrorist attack, to push their white supremacist agendas."
MacDonald goes on to draw links between CCCN and known hate groups such as the Proud Boys and Soldiers of Odin, encouraging others to join a countedemonstration to "shut up the hate."
Those familiar with a recent protest organized at Nathan Phillips Square by a group called Worldwide Coalition Against Islam (WCAI) might be having a bit of deja vu.
It's important to note, however, that WCAI shut down its planned anti-Muslim rally after thousands of Torontonians came forward on Facebook to say that they'd be present too — and that they'd happily combat any sort of racist hate speech with words and demonstrations of their own.
At present, a total of 59 people are "interested in going" to the Canadian Combat Coalition National group's vigil for patriots.
Meanwhile, some 135 are interested in attending the counter-rally event, Danforth United Against Hate.
"We welcome muslims and all races and religions in our community," wrote McDonald, himself a Danforth local, on the Facebook page for that event.
"Let's come out, and drown these fools out with an overwhelming community response. Let's show them and everyone else, that in the east end we can handle these hate mongers ourselves," he continued.
"Let's show them that this bullshit isn't welcome here, and that we're not afraid on the Danforth."
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