Saturday, December 16, 2017

How To Demonize A Minority In Less Than A Week Using Actual #Fake News

This past Tuesday, the Quebec-based TVA ran a story claiming that two Montreal mosques had demanded women working on a construction site be removed from the area on Fridays. The story was later picked up by Ezra Levant and "Rebel Media" and used as another opportunity claim this story is an example of a Canadian, "no-go" zone and attack the Canadian-Muslim community with race-baiting commentary:

The folks who responded to Levant's screed (including one using the "old stock Canadian" dog whistle) were very clear in how they felt about the Canadian-Muslim community:

In Quebec, anti-Muslim/anti-immigrant hate groups including La Meute and Storm Alliance planned a protest at one of the offending mosques:

There was however a problem with this story of gender discrimination.

None of it was actually true:
After two days of investigation, the Quebec Construction Commission has found no sign whatsoever that anyone associated with two mosques in Côte-des-Neiges asked for women to be excluded from a work site outside their doors — ever. 
That’s the conclusion of the CCQ’s report, based on 10 meetings with witnesses from the construction companies involved, and with two mosques in C.D.N. — the Ahl-Ill Bait and the Baitul-Mukarram — as well as with the women allegedly targeted by the unusual, anti-feminist requests.
The controversy erupted on Tuesday, when TVA News reported that one of the two mosques had requested women not be allowed to work near the mosques on Fridays, the most important day of prayers for Muslims. TVA did not specify which mosque.
But it initially stated a clause was written into a contract signed with the excavation company G-Tek, which was laying electric cables, and/or the signalling subcontractor Map Signalisation, both of which were working on or near the mosque’s property.
Scrummed in Quebec City, Diane Lemieux, the president of the CCQ, said it appears that women may indeed have been moved from one part of the site to another, as part of the normal management of the work site.
But these shifts were made as a result of a surplus of workers on-site, or because workers were needed elsewhere, she said. Lemieux repeatedly insisted that no one who met with the CCQ, including the women, said there was ever any request made, formally or informally, in relation to the mosques’ activities. 
The damage, of course, has been done. 
Already Wednesday, representatives of the Ahl-Ill Bait mosque, at the centre of the firestorm, said they had received many hate messages and threats. They called the police after one person even threatened to burn it down.
By Friday, TVA finally apologized for the story:
The TVA news network apologized Friday for a controversial and since debunked report on mosques banning women from a nearby construction site, but a national Muslim organization says the network needs to go further.

However, ARC's readers know that, as stated elsewhere, the damage had been done and no apology would stop the Islamophobes and anti-immigrant bigots from believing what they wanted to believe:

Georges Hallak also commented on the story by forwarding a post referring to the retraction as "fake news":

Now while La Meute claimed that they called off their protest, Hallak and others (including members of the Northern Guard, one of whom was wearing his vest identifying him as a member, as well as members of La Meute and Storm Alliance who were not in identifying clothing) protested anyways.
Hallak continued to insist the original story was true. Another woman said she didn't care if the story was true or not. Members shout at worshipers in an effort to intimidate them. And there's a rousing chant of "fake news" directed at the attending media:

It hasn't been a year since a man walked into a Quebec City mosque and murdered six worshipers while injuring others. It seems that some are eager to see a repeat of the tragedy.
Now while the original story proved to be a lie, we are still left with the question of where that lie originated. One individual suggests that it might have originated with La Meute, the anti-Muslim hate group that has been in the news repeatedly over the past several months:

Now while I'm generally disinclined to believe conspiracy theories, there is some evidence that this may not be such an outlandish claim:

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