Recently I attended a symposium featuring the notable conservative writers and anti-Jihadists Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer. Titled "The Dangers of Islamic Extremism and Western Complacency," the symposium was held at the Toronto Hilton and hosted by the Jewish Defense League (JDL). (Event video available here.) Earlier on, the Islamic organization CAIR-CAN, now rebadged as the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM), had sent a brash and menacing letter to the Hilton attempting to intimidate it into annulling the event. The letter was courageously ignored by hotel management, and the event took place as advertised. I say "courageously" since the previous May a similar lecture by Geller, slated for the Chabad Flamingo Synagogue in Toronto, was summarily cancelled by the presiding rabbi, Mendel Kaplan, who succumbed to the strong-arm tactics of the diversity, equity and inclusion bureau of the York Regional Police. The bureau's director, Inspector Ricky Veerappan, who also happens to be a Muslim, threatened Kaplan with the loss of his police chaplaincy if he went ahead with the Geller presentation, and the good rabbi buckled. I suspect that his late Chabad colleague Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg, butchered by Islamic terrorists in Mumbai on November 26, 2008, would have shown rather more backbone.
As I strolled about the premises during the afternoon, I noticed that our national broadcaster, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), was conspicuously present, unloading equipment from several vans under the supervision of a youngish woman brandishing a microphone. As I had previously worked for the Mother Corp in music and public affairs, I decided to engage her in conversation under the aspect of an informal chat between fellow professionals. She was there, I learned, to cover a press conference to be held that afternoon by the NCCM protesting the Geller-Spencer symposium scheduled for later that evening. Naturally, the Geller-Spencer talk was not on her agenda. It did not take long for me to discover that she knew absolutely nothing about the Muslim Brotherhood affiliations of the CAIR group, even less about the Muslim Brotherhood, and less than that about Islamic terrorism, the Koran, the Hadith, and the inflammatory statements of various Muslim-Canadian imams advocating stoning for adultery, wife beating, gay bashing, and Sharia law in general.