Ironically named NGO, Canadian Journalists for Free Expression (CJFE), wanted to ban Donald Trump from coming into Canada for a G7 summit in June.
Then it went horribly and beautifully wrong.
CJFE claims to be an organization of journalists that monitors, defends and promotes free expression and access to information in Canada and around the world.
But a couple of days ago, they launched a petition calling on the Trudeau government to use its full force to prevent Trump from entering the country as if he were some kind of Nazi war criminal instead of the leader of our closest geopolitical ally and largest trading partner.
The petition read:
· Revoke Donald Trump's invitation to attend the Quebec G7 Summit in June 2018.
· Work with US counterparts to define a framework for a US delegation to attend the summit, without Trump's direct participation.
· Ensure that further security preparations for the summit are in full compliance with Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms, including Section 2(b)
After a nearly universal lambasting from journalists across the political spectrum who saw this as political censorship, diplomatically disastrous, and outside the CJFE mandate, they deleted their petition and issued a statement.
“We shared the petition because we legitimately believe that Canada's diplomatic actions should be consistent with promoting and supporting press freedom internationally. There is a very real need for Canada to use all available handles, including diplomatic pressures and sanctions to resist the rise of authoritarianism not just in the United States but around the world. This is something CJFE firmly believes in and will always advocate for."
Then CJFE deleted their response to their deleted petition. They censored their own attempt at censorship and then censored their response to them censoring their censorship. Are you following me? All this from an organization that claims to be devoted to transparency.
Watch my video to see some instances when CJFE didn’t seem to be interested in the Liberals using diplomacy to promote a free press.
They never called on anyone to ban Obama from Canada when he was locking up leakers and journalists more frequently than any other president before him.
And if journalism has a reputation problem, that’s not Trump’s fault. That’s on journalists, like those at CJFE.