It’s springtime in Canada, a time of year which brings forth a run of religious holidays. Within contemporary society, institutional treatment of religious celebrations reveals a great deal regarding our social condition.
Drilling down on the subject elicits some curious observations. If Canadians didn’t know better, they might believe a serious dose of favouritism exists in media presentation.
The month of April brings forth Easter, Ramadan, Passover and the Sikh celebration of Vaisakhi. In terms of media exposure, the Islamic celebration of Ramadan is the runaway winner. Government-funded CBC News are functioning as a lightning rod of Ramadan celebrations. Mosque openings, new radio stations, celebrations from Halifax to Victoria and onward to Yellowknife.
Vaisakhi is more localized, with celebrations in Brampton, ON and Surrey BC leading the way. In both cases, media focus maintains a purely religious perspective. Mainstream media focus on the sanctity of both Vaisakhi and Ramadan. CBC News are diligent in a refusal to trivialize these holidays.
We contrast this with published material on the Christian holiday of Easter. At the time of writing, the holiday will begin in three days time. Major media theme thus far– tainted Easter eggs:
“Canada’s Food Inspection Agency recalled several additional Kinder chocolate products on April 11, 2022” writes Toronto City News. “Recall: More Kinder products may be contaminated with salmonella,” says the Montreal Gazette.
What would Easter 2022 in Canada be without a healthy dose of Covid fear-factor?
“Canadians to gather for Easter, Passover. How safe is it amid 6th COVID-19 wave?” states Global News.
Degree of warning or impediment regarding Ramadan and Vaisakhi? Not one word. On the theme of Covid, we extend our observations. Fair to say that throughout the course of the pandemic, the Christian faith has been of “special concern” to Canadian authorities.
Churches opening their front doors to discover police waving warrants in their faces. Congregants were promptly removed. Fines had been issued, pastors arrested– the whole nine yards. A privilege it was not. Rather, this sentiment applies to Mosques and Sikh Temples. Nothing has been published regarding non-Christian religious institutions receiving harassment. Are we to believe that, in contrast to Canadian churches, all of them adhered to Covid mandates to the letter? Unlikely it is.
What do we gather from these “coincidences?” Is there an inherent bias against Christian Canada? Does this exist in contradistinction to religions of the 3rd World?
“This is the second consecutive Easter where COVID-19 has forced us to celebrate differently. That means many of us won’t be gathering with friends and family, and some of us may not be able to attend Easter service.”
— Justin Trudeau, April, 2021
“It[Ramadan] remains one of the holiest holidays in the Muslim community. It’s a time for prayer,a time for reflection and self-restraint, and a time to celebrate the values at the core of Islam.”
— Justin Trudeau, April 2022
“For all Canadians, Vaisakhi is an opportunity to honour Canada’s Sikh community – one of the largest in the world – and celebrate the many contributions they have made. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Canadians of Sikh faith have shown their commitment to their communities and their country through selfless service.”
— Justin Trudeau, April 2022
Anyone else detect tangible bias within his presentation? Trudeau informs Canadians we all must honour our Sikh community. The sanctity of Islam forms the core of government messaging.
We turn to Easter in an attempt to crystalize the essence of media messaging. It’s a holiday imbued with the trivial– Easter eggs and chocolate bunnies. This year, there is a good chance they will make you sick. The fear factor is front-and-centre, as Covid warnings are associated with Christian and Jewish celebrations.
We pick up on the exclusive nature of “good vibrations.” In ways intended to be subtle, media are “dampening” Christian religious celebrations. Not so for Vaisakhi and Ramadan.
Why? In Canada, approximately 65% of citizens identify as secular or religious Christians. Muslims represent 4% of our demography; Sikhs make up less than 1%. A curious state-of-affairs? Of course it is. Extent to which media will address this social paradigm? Begin at zero, and head downhill from there.
It well appears government and media prefer non-Christian faiths over Christianity. The number one concern of the federal government is to remain in power. With an immigration intake of 411,000 per-year, we draw a conclusion:
The future of Canada– a topic perpetually shunned by legacy media– is found in the communities most supported by government. The demography tells half the story. The remainder is found in the ideological.
Which form of citizen is more conducive to Justin Trudeau’s post-modern Canada? Which communities fit Trudeau’s “progressive model” of neo-authoritarian rule?
It certainly isn’t “Old Stock” Canada, Conservative Canada or Christian Canada. Many of us understand the woke machinations of Liberal government. We recognize an erosion of democracy when we see one.
Not so for Canada’s “new arrival” communities, most of which derive from authoritarian societies. This is why Justin Trudeau prefers them. Within the microcosm of religion in Canada, we begin to understand our national destiny.