Days have gone since the mosque killing and the emotions of the first days have cooled down and it is now possible to address rationally what happened and what did not on that evening. Following the event, Canadians were flooded with baseless theories and generalizations presented as objective information. With so much half true information, it has never been as hard for someone to know the truth.
After each Muslim terrorist attack, the media is always quick to ponder the “no generalization” and the “lone wolf” theory even when Islamic organizations do claim responsibility for the attack. This time, we heard no such words. While the paramedics were still evacuating the corpses and the wounded from the mosque, the media had already found the culprit: the “far right”! Quickly the shooting was linked to the Fédération des Québécois de souche (FQS), that I represent, and Atalante, an identitarian youth group, by broadcasting images of our past events on the news channels even though nothing allowed them to draw such a link.
It was mesmerizing to see that, especially considering that neither the FQS nor Atalante has made Islam a pivotal aspect of our speech. We both talk about identity and immigration, but very seldom of Islam per se. Why were those two groups targeted? Maybe because we are well established in Quebec City or simply because our struggle against immigration is far more disturbing than people who criticize Islam based on liberal beliefs.
From the Figaro to the New York Times and Die Spiegel, every major media outlet mentioned the FQS in their articles on the shooting and the danger that the rising “far right” was posing to society. For an average reader, the link between the FQS and the killer is automatic. When reading these articles, one cannot help but have the impression that the murderer was part of the FQS or was at least a supporter, which was not the case. Some newspapers even went so far as to link Marine Le Pen and Donald Trump to the shooting. How low can the mass media go in faking the news?
What were the killer’s motives? Hard to tell! Did he choose that place randomly or to gain more media exposure or did he choose it to “avenge” the hundreds of victims of terrorist attacks? Probably a bit of both, but furthering the nationalist cause was definitely not one of his motives.
We are in the field of suppositions and the trial will shed light on the truth. Until then, what we know is that he was not involved in any “right wing” or identitarian group and did not listen to the so-called populist radio stations who had to share the blame for daring discuss immigration and Islam. Even better, on the social media he did not follow any “far right” page and liked different politicians such as the late Jack Layton.
When we take a few minutes, we realize Alexandre Bissonnette fits in the profile of the “mass shooter” who are becoming more prolific in America and who always choose crowded places like movie theaters or more often schools. He was a political science student of 27 years who still lived at his parents’ home and we know that his twin brother had left a few months ago. Was that the trigger? Bissonnette had no job, no girlfriend and very few people he could call friends. He was shy and had been bullied in school, never defending himself or fighting back, and like most mass shooters, he had a fascination for everything related to guns.
Since the shooting, he has shown remorse and it must noted that he himself called the cops to tell them where he was. According to cellmates, he is under shock, spends his days crying and must be heavily drugged. Not the usual profile for a political fanatic.
It is also important to note that on the very night of the shooting, the media and politicians talked about a terrorist attack, but right now, only charges of murder and attempted murder were laid. The charges of terrorism that would have been added seem to have been quietly dropped by the police officers who did question Bissonnette. Such charges involved a political or religious motivation and the fact they were dropped implies that no such motives were proven.
Crackdown on Free Speech
Despite these facts, pseudo specialists coming out of nowhere started going public to explain that every “far right” activist was a potential terrorist. The “Center for the Prevention of Radicalization Leading to Violence” could not be more satisfied: for weeks they had gone in the media saying that the Muslims did not represent any threat, that the real threat was the so-called “far right.” Full of themselves, the advisers attached to that government organization came out in the media to first talk about their relevance and second to call for a ban of any discourse critical of immigration and multiculturalism. They fail to understand that it is by victimizing people who hold certain ideas and to criminalize those ideas that you produce fanatics and “radicals.” When people can express themselves freely without being scared of going to jail, face reprisals or lose their employment, they never think of resorting to violence. But when someone cannot even risk voicing what he finds to be the truth, then, he might feel alienated and therefore look for extreme solutions.
Justin Trudeau heard what those so-called specialists said and used the shooting as an opportunity to push his M-103 law banning “Islamophobia” forward. The Quebec police too heard the message and started patrolling the social media and asking for Internet users’ help in finding people who would post “hateful” comments. Some arrests were already made, not unlike in China where good values are also invoked to restrict free speech, and charges were laid for comments often simply condemning mass immigration and Islamization. Some of the comments leading to arrests were in no way hateful, even for Canadian standards, and it is very likely that the authors will not be judged guilty. Still, for the people arrested it is a personal drama: they will have to pay various fees and a lawyer, go to court and live with the ostracism linked to these arrests and trials. The effect was to make people scared of expressing their thoughts.
Ironically, after an Islamic terrorist attack the police does the same thing and targets the people who may voice concerns about the rise of Islam and the frequency of terrorist attacks. The police wants to avoid a “hateful reaction” from the public. They don’t target ISIS supporters, however, who share propaganda videos of ISIS where beheadings and executions take place. If a Muslim is the victim or perpetrator of a crime, it is always the “Islamophobic” comments that are investigated by the police.
The double standard of the left-wing establishment in this most current of years is obvious.