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August 26, 1966 - Image 18

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1966-08-26

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Canadian Jewry's !Defense Program, Communal Activities


(Copyright, 1966, JTA, Inc.)

MONTREAL — The outstanding
event of the year in group rela-
tions in Canada was the report
issued by the Minister of Justice's
Special Committee on Hate Propa-
ganda, commonly known as the
Cohen Committee after its chair-
man, Maxwell Cohen, dean of the
McGill Law School. The seven-man
commission brought down a unani-
mous recommendation in favor of
legislation to ban incitement to
religious and racial hatred.
In one respect the recommenda-
tion did not go as far as the Unit-
ed Kingdom's Race Relations Act.
The Cohen Committee suggested
an exculpatory clause that truth
may be a defense — a safeguard
missing in the British legislation.
The proposals met with a mixed
reception from the press. • Among
the • newspapers greeting it were
the Manitoba Free Press (its execu-
tive editor, Shane McKay, was a
committee member), the Montreal
Star, and the Toronto Telegram.
The Toronto Star was guarded and
evasive, only •agreeing in full to
the anti-genocide provision. The
Toronto Globe and Mail, the Lon-
don (Ont.) Free Press, Peterboro
Examiner, Kingston Whig-Standard
and others were opposed on libera-
tion grounds.
The report was made public in
April and by the time the House
of Commons adjourned in July for
its summer recess it had not been
dealt with.
It is hoped that, when Parlia-
ment resumes in the fall — or be-
fore — the administration will
make some announcement of its
intentions in this r e s p e c t, i.e.,
whether it will implement the rec-
ommendations of the Minister of
Justice's committee by bringing
down legislation more or less in
conformity with its principles.
Neo-Nazi Agitation
In Toronto, Canadian Jewry's
second largest community (Jewish
pop. about 95,000), a 24-year-old
unemployed agitator named John
Beattie continues to grab attention
in press and television out of all
proportion to his minuscule follow-
ing, by his attempts to break into
the limelight in the approved style
of Lincoln Rockwell (whose avowed
disciple he is). After last year's
virtual riot in Allen Gardens, the
City Council made the grant of a
speaking license in the parks de-
pendent upon its discretion. When
it found that Beattie was making
a regular public trek to City Hall
and exploiting the situation, an
amended by-law was passed (sug-
gested by the Canadian Jewish
Congress) that made the giving of
permits mandatory but contained
a clause forbidding the stirring up
of racial and religious hatred.
On June 5, Beattie's speech in-
dulged in a few snide innuendoes.
but two weeks later (to those who
could hear it above the din of the
hooting and the virtually sound-
proofing cordon of policemen on
horseback) his talk seemed clearly
an invitation to Jew-baiting. The
chief of police, tired of providing
the agitator with whole squads of
protective police personnel, asked
that, for purposes of public safety,
Beattie no longer be given a speak-
ing permit. He was charged with
violation of the by-law and hils
case will be heard in the fall.
In the meantime Beattie continues
his semi-clandestine activity, mak-
ing grandstand gestures such as
the "invitation" for a neo-Nazi in-
ternational conference in Canada
(an event the Canadian government
has no intention of permitting),
meeting with Rockwell half way
across the international bridge over
the Niagara River, and using every
Possible notoriety-capturing tech-
nique to penetrate the mass media.
Nothing public has been heard
from David Stanley, 21-year-old
original instigator of active neo-
Nazism in Canada, since his recan-
tation in August, 1965. He is
rumored to have returned to
Adrien Arcand
In Quebec, Adrien Arcand's star
blazed up again for a while but
now seems to have been re-ex-
tinguished. In November 19 65,


Montrealers were shocked to learn
that the aging leader had attracted
more than 600 persons at a and
dinner (the preliminaries and
plans for this event had been cam-
ouflaged and successfully kept from
the public). Later that winter, 450
came to hear him and—to add in-
sult to injury—on municipal prem-
ises in a building in the Botanical
Gardens. However, since these
two sessions, he had been unable
to enter municipal or church-owned
buildings and has had trouble find-
ing an adequate meeting-place. In
the spring, after two last-minute
changes of venue, he mustered 150
Quebec's Elections
Quebec had a surprise political
upset when the forward-looking
Liberal government of Jean Lesage
was defeated by Daniel Johnson's
Union Nationale party in June.
There had been close observation
of the election campaign in the
more remote areas of the province,
and no evidence was found of anti-
Semitic appeals among the various
separatist factions. Immediately
after the voting, the new premier
commented that he would have re-
ceived even more seats in Mont-
real had "the English and the
Jews" voted for him, but his has
not been interpreted as a hostile
remark. Several weeks after the
election ; however, one of the sep-

aratist parties—the one linked with
the provincial Social Credit Party
—was found to revert to the clas-
sical anti-Semitic gibes about "Jui-
verie internationale" and its bond
with Lesage—all based on a com-
ment by Raymond Aron in far-away
Stock Exchange Bias
Quebec's new anti-discrimination
law will receive a test when a case
is heard against a well-known brok-
erage firm for not engaging Jewish
job applicants. A direct result of
the attention this has received was
the naming to the Montreal Stock
Exchange of its first Jewish mem-
ber. The firm accused of discrimin-
ation is being defended by a promi-
nent Jewish attorney who is chal-
lenging the constitutionality of the
anti-discrimination law. (See Story,
Page 10). let
Aid to Day Schools
While in the U.S.A: the anti-
poverty program has enabled a
wedge to be inserted in the wall
separating church and state, in
Canada no positive advances were
made in the direction of such sub-
sidies despite the absence of any
strict constitutional division. In
Quebec, the defeat of the Lesage
government was interpreted by
some as a negative reaction to its
apparent willingness to do away
with the "confessionality" of the
province's traditional school sys-

18—Friday, August 26, 1966

tem. Whether the new regime will
look kindly on government money
for Jewish day schools is not yet
clear. A committee of Jewish day
school parents is working toward
this goal in Montreal, and there
the Canadian Jewish Congress is
giving assistance and guidance to
this committee with no complaints
from any elements in the Jewish
community. In Ontario, however,
which has had a different histori-
cal development in its school pat-
tern, Jewish citizens are evenly
divided on the problem.
Nothing else reflects the region-
al differences of Canadian Jewish
life as this difference between
Ontario and Quebec in the attitudes
towards government aid for the
Jewish day school.
Jewish day schools in Canada are
no longer to be found exclusively
in the large metropolitan centers
of Jewish concentration. Ottawa
(Jewish pop., 6,000) has had a day
school for about 15 years. Van-
couver (Jewish pop. 8000) has
one. In Calgary and Edmonton
(Jewish pop., 3,500 and 2,600) they
have virtually replaced the after-
noon Jewish school; Hamilton (Jew-
ish pop., 4,000) has started its Jew-
ish day school.
Zionist Politics
Canada's internal Zionist con-
flict is still bubbling. Last fall,


after the Labor Zionists and Miz-
rachi staged a walk-out from the
convention of the Zionist Organiza-
tion of Canada, there was talk of
rapprochement. A Zionist self-study
commission was set up under Jus-
tice Abraham Lieff. Before it had
completed its considerations, a
Canadian Zionist Federation was
announced, comprising the "dissi-
dent" groups—Lazor Zionists, Miz-
rachi, Ahdut Avoda, and the Lea-
gue for Pioneering I s r a el (i.e.
Mapam). News dispatches in the
general press gave the impression
that the Zionists of Canada had
indeed united when, in actual fact,.
the breach had widened between
two groupings of Zionist ideologieS.
The Revisionists who, in the past,
have so often been "on the outside"
of the Establishment, now find
themselves aligned with the Z.O.C.
Issue at stake is the control of
funds raised by the Cana dian
United Israel App eal. The dis-
senters resent the fact that
the Z.O.C., though not a member-
ship arganization, has control of
the disposal of UIA funds and their
Two communities — Vancouver
and Ottawa — have split their unit-
ed fund-raising in two (contrary
to the trend since 1948): one for
overseas -MA and UJRA (i.e. JDC);
the other for local causes.

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