As the union representing hundreds of journalists and media workers in British Columbia, Unifor 2000 was appalled to hear of the Facebook postings, since removed, by former People’s Party of Canada candidate for Burnaby South, Marciela Williams — aka Marcella Desjarlais on the social media site.
As described by the Vancouver Sun, whose members are part of our union, Williams “posted an internet meme that wrongly claimed members of the media were prosecuted during the Nuremberg trials and put to death for lying to the public.
“In a comment accompanying the post, Williams wrote: ‘Should happen again!’”
This followed a recent Twitter post that got PPC Leader Maxime Bernier temporarily suspended from the platform, in which he encouraged his supporters to harass journalists who had asked him difficult questions.
‘We’ve seen how these kinds of posts and incitements have led to violence in the United States,” said Unifor Local 2000 President Brian Gibson. “This kind of language has no place in Canada. In fact, it might be criminal.”
Journalists and media workers, like those in Unifor 2000, are ordinary people, just like anyone else, who have jobs to do and go to work every day trying to do their best and provide for their families, said Gibson. “They might be your neighbours. They might be your friends.”
“They shouldn’t be threatened for doing their jobs or for who they are.”
Their jobs include asking questions and, in the case of politicians, sometimes asking tough questions.
“Politicians have every right to decline to answer a question, to evade a question, to give a non-answer, or to answer honestly and forthrightly,” said Gibson, “but not to respond with threats. That’s not acceptable.”
Williams’ post appeared on Facebook. Gibson said the social media site needs to do a better job policing incendiary posts and Williams should post an apology.