Tbnewswatch Local News
Monday July 6 2015
3:59 PM EDT
2014-06-13 at 17:31

Mayor says controversial political ad motivated by hate

Mayor Keith Hobbs, NAN Grand Chief Harvey Yesno and Fort William First Nation chief Georjann Morriseau.
Jamie Smith, tbnewswatch.com
Mayor Keith Hobbs, NAN Grand Chief Harvey Yesno and Fort William First Nation chief Georjann Morriseau.
By Jamie Smith, tbnewswatch.com

THUNDER BAY -- The city’s mayor believes comments made by Tamara Johnson are motivated by hate.

Johnson, Libertarian Thunder Bay-Superior North candidate, ran a full page advertisement in The Chronicle-Journal this week that First Nations leaders and now the city of Thunder Bay have denounced as racism.

The ad states that no group of people are entitled to handouts, no one is owed a debt by taxpayers and that Crown lands are public, not native.

"No group of people are 'special' and deserve first class 'Super-Citizen' status," Johnson's ad states.

Mayor Keith Hobbs, in the lobby at city hall Friday afternoon, said that the ad and comments made by Johnson on Facebook are clearly hate.

"It makes me sick," he said. "It flies right in the face of what we're doing as a city. This is not a Thunder Bay that we want.”

Fort William First Nation chief Georjann Morriseau said she was shocked and appalled when she saw the ad, but she sadly wasn't that surprised.

"I think we know that in our community there are a lot of people that are severely, severely misinformed and uneducated when it comes to the Indigenous people of Canada," she said.

While it's ignorant of treaty rights, the issue is one of human rights in general Morriseau said.

With Johnson getting more than 900 votes in Thursday night's provincial election, she said it shows the community has a long way to go.

"There's an unfortunate appetite for that kind of rhetoric," she said.

Johnson said she stands by everything printed in the ad and is only telling the truth that no one is above the law.

"I've never said anything racist, not one word. Read my post," she said referring to her Facebook profile.

"Please point out a racist comment that I've made. People may not like the truth and they may not like the conversation but we need to have it."
Having a conversation is something everyone agrees on.

Hobbs said issues like this need to get out in the open so that people can be educated on treaties and the history of First Nations people. There needs to be more public outcry,  but it's still disheartening that people have to come to city hall to gather over something like this at all.

For Morriseau, she'll keep meeting and speaking out because she believes it's worth it.

Johnson said she's received numerous death threats and has filed police reports.

Morriseau said she hopes people won't stoop to that level.


Click here to submit a letter to the editor.

Click here to report a typo or error



We've improved our comment system.
Harold says:
There was not ANY display of hate in this ad, so I dont know what the fuss is about from Hobbs.
6/16/2014 4:13:00 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
hotchoc says:
BUBE, I am not better or worse than you. I am not better than a black, a east indian, a native, an italian, a Jew, a scotsman or anyone. We are all equal. And I am one of the above.

But I am still waiting as is shortpeter and others to see specifically what the racist statements were.

How dare the Mayor accuse this woman of hate.

Spell it out for me. In words please because I am still looking for the words.

I do not agree with Ms. Johnson's approach and even some of her belief's but I am fed up with everyone pulling the race card every time someone asks a question or disagrees.

If anyone thinks this sort of thing is going to get better by this kind of city action, I would suggest they are out to lunch.
6/16/2014 3:35:53 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
westfort resident says:
My sentiments exactly, hotchoc. This story has been online for four days and still no clear and concise specifics from those tossing around accusations of "hate" and "racism".

Note that the title of this article was changed today from "Fighting Hate?" to "Mayor says controversial political ad motivated by hate".

Why the title change, Leith/Jamie? Please explain.

As I previously stated: "Those who disagree with differing views and opinions use words like "hate" and "racist". Regardless, she is entitled to her opinions, whether you agree or not.

If there are any lies in her statements, prove them wrong with verifiable facts.

Publish web links and treaty docs online with specific references to refute her statements if you are 100% sure that her statements are wrong."
6/16/2014 4:26:39 PM
BUBE says:
Breaks my heart how much people resist equality and change....Don't you all see how beautiful this could be?
6/16/2014 12:55:24 PM
Shortpeter says:
Still waiting for someone to point out what was racist. After all the self righteous finger wagging and turning purple with manufactured indignance, you can't back it up with facts.
6/15/2014 9:49:32 AM
hotchoc says:
mason bar beenie and everyone else attacking this woman.

I am still waiting. And many others are still waiting.

What did Tamara Johnson say that was racist.

It may have been silly or incorrect but how is it racist.

This word is trotted out every time people cannot deal with the message.

I am not saying I agree with the woman, but please let me know what words, or sentences were racist.

If a native person does not pay tax, is saying that racist???

She may be politically naive. She may be intolerant of new ideas but racist??

I read the ad. I saw no racism.

Please correct me if I am wrong.
6/15/2014 8:24:30 AM
Kristien_Michael says:
I have no criticisms of this statement whatsoever, but I do wish to add a thought in regards to something that I personally feel needs to be emphasised:

Debate is always welcome! There should never be a person saying we can't talk about issues of consternation, or we can't discuss something controversial, or we can't initiate a conversation on a topic. The issue with what was stated by this particular candidate Tamara Johnson was that her statement was based on ignorance. It was blatantly factually incorrect in regards to several matters, and the ignorance stated was clearly utilizing ignorance to promote hatred.

The Indian Act was not created by the Assembly of First Nations/Assemblee des premieres Nations, The Métis National Council, The Congress of Aboriginal Peoples, The Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami it was created by Canada. The Indian Act never defined the contents of the terms of agreements from years past between these parties it was unilaterally implemented via S91(24) of the Con
6/14/2014 11:01:55 PM
Hoss says:
In Total Agreement with Tamara Johnson. Here is a quote for Mayor Hobbs if he is able to comprehend it:

'Every truth passes through three stages before it is recognized. In the first it is ridiculed, in the second it is opposed, in the third it is regarded as self-evident.'

- Arthur Schopenhauer
6/14/2014 8:27:38 PM
commonsense says:
Another interesting letter on this subject appears in today's Chronicle-Journal. I would add a link to it, but it seems the letter is in the hard copy paper, but not online. The heading is "AD contains no racism, is truthful bases on treaties".
The letter writer refers to various First Nations Treaties applicable in our area. it would appear there are direct quotes from these documents.

It would be beneficial if both local papers, or even City, would do some extensive research and bring similar, perhaps more thorough information to the public, to improve the discourse here.
Instead of people "taking sides", it would be great to have a dialogue on improving the relationship between our City and our neighbours south of the river.
This discussion isn't helping a lot, nor is the Mayor's stance. Does saying this debate "makes him sick" sound like something a leader should say"?
6/14/2014 8:04:52 PM
internettoughguy19 says:
Tamara Johnson is only speaking her thoughts and Ideas but what is more disturbing is the amount of people that don't see it as wrong and untrue. I am sure there are others that don't agree but it's the people that do agree and that is where my worry comes from. The question is will these people remain on the sidelines and just share in these opinions? or will they begin to act on them? I only hope and pray that good sense prevail's and this sense of ownership of one group over another doesn't take a violent turn. They may be racist idiology, but when it becomes racist acts against First Nation's people by the greater society it is then we will go back to the dark ages but this time we all have cell phones to record any attacks if there are any. Trust me in this I drive the city alot and always have my dash cam pointed out my windows in case I spot anything out of the ordinary. Should I happen upon any violent act I know how to write, report and record event and will forward it.
6/14/2014 6:32:03 PM
Det John Kimble says:
Who is committing violence against who? your implying that people that may agree with TJ's ideology will get violent. I think that is highly unlikely.
What if its the other way around?
Do some reading how about googleing this on you phone "Elsipogtog First Nation protests" or as above mentioned calendonia Richard Smoke...

All violence must be stopped on both sides. And speaking of laws who was breaking the law here against a court injunction??

And your making it sound one sided.
6/15/2014 10:19:56 AM
Mason bar beenie says:
Funny how a crapload of new idea ties pop here for this story.
Just because one group of people don't pay same taxes gives no one the right to be discriminatory or racially profile anyone. You have no right to single out a race or group just because you don't agree. Disagree? Get a law degree and go try to change the law by debating it in court. Don't troll your way into getting the other racists riled up. That is irresponsible as a politician and public representative.
Tittler/Johnson fans are sick.
6/14/2014 3:51:12 PM
friendlyskies says:
Sad to see that people don't understand the difference between "Free Speech", "Expressing an Opinion", and "Hate Speech." Her ad singled out FN peoples under the guise of a political platform. Good for the City of Thunder Bay for speaking out against the Ad. Shame on the Chronicle Journal for printing it.
6/14/2014 3:49:27 PM
theangryone says:
Hobbs causes the taxpayers of Thunder Bay $1.75 million and deflects it with this rhetoric. What a hypocrite. You Sir have lost my vote. You have done nothing about crime in this city and it is time for change!
6/14/2014 3:37:07 PM
Hopper says:
The racism is the bigger picture. My daughter showed me what Johnson had written on her page and it was indeed disgusting. As a veteran I have fought for human rights and I cannot help being disgusted at a public candidate being so openly racist. Sure, you can whine about taxes being unfair, however it's tiny baby potatoes compared to want giant corporations and government gets away with every single day. Open your eyes, you're being penny wise pound foolish.

These treaties are in place and there is NEVER EVER an excuse for racism. NEVER. I can't believe all the people here justifying it, just listen to yourselves! It is never justified.
You don't have to use the n word to be a racist, your attitudes and class show your lack of class and humanity.
6/14/2014 2:59:46 PM
Curious says:
Speaking the truth doesn't mean you are a racist.
Why is it That people can wear and advertise gay pride, native pride yet if you wear something that says straight pride or white pride you are racist?
Is this not a double standard and "racist" toward the word "straight" or "white"?
My granddaughter is really upset about this whole thing about racism....at 10 yrs old she already thinks it is one sided. What is happening to our country?
6/14/2014 6:27:55 PM
hotchoc says:
Whether her statements were accurate or not, someone please tell me what specific comments in that advertisement were racist???

Anyone?? Specifics please.

I see the term floated out so often it has lost it meaning.

What was racist
6/14/2014 1:06:09 PM
olive garden says:
freedom of speech we live in free country.
Hobbs you lost my vote aswell.
6/14/2014 12:49:53 PM
fastball says:
Nobody stopped her from saying what was on her mind. Nobody put cuffs on her and gagged her, or threw her into a jail cell as she tried to speak.
Free speech, however, does not mean consequence-FREE speech. And if you're making people uncomfortable with your words, then you're going to have to live with the consequences. People can be sensitive with certain topics, and you should accept that.
Not everyone wants to hear the truth...even if it might be right.
Here's an experiment - try telling your wife the truth the next time she asks if you think she's getting fat.
6/14/2014 3:48:30 PM
moi says:

....count me in too.Come election time, I will exercise my power/my voice at the polling station, and let Hobbs know he's lost my vote.
6/16/2014 5:27:43 PM
Det John Kimble says:
You can't argue it, there is a large public sentiment that one can call either a racist hatefull element or perhaps people calling a spade a spade.
Tamaras word choice was inflammatory and that didn't help.
I think leaders need to address using language that doesn't scare off open dialogue , that means you cant degrade people across the board by calling them racist either, that's inflammatory.
There are wrongs on either side! There is racism on both sides!
I don't agree with all of tamaras stances she will be forgotten soon, the fact she popped and has a following means there is a big invisible elephant in the room.
I think many of these people are reasonable.
Its means FN also need to pull back and look at the way they get their issues on the table.
Everyone has the right to protest, a few hours of blockade really whats the big deal.
But lets not forget public disobedience can get violent ( Ricard Smoke Caledonia) and that helps no one.
6/14/2014 12:44:46 PM
blah blah says:
Im sure many feel the same but just dont speak up.
6/14/2014 12:44:13 PM
Jeannied says:
Johnson drones on about natives and how "they" have illegal road blocks...she called other political candidates really crude names, and stated that the incumbents didn't stop protests because they are cared (using again, very crude classless language) and claims freedom of speech to justify her disgusting attitudes about one race of people...yet refuses to acknowledge Canadians have the right to peaceful protest, which is why people protesting in a road block are rarely arrested. White or native doesn't matter.

Also, she has state that taxpayers are more important that anyone else, so quit the bs about her being all for "equality for everyone". She isn't and is clear about that.
She should not have propagated rumor after learning the hotel stories weren't true. Classless and crass.
6/14/2014 12:18:51 PM
westfort resident says:

Marginal note:Recognition and declaration of rights and freedoms

1. It is hereby recognized and declared that in Canada there have existed and shall continue to exist without discrimination by reason of race, national origin, colour, religion or sex, the following human rights and fundamental freedoms, namely,

(a) the right of the individual to life, liberty, security of the person and enjoyment of property, and the right not to be deprived thereof except by due process of law;

(b) the right of the individual to equality before the law and the protection of the law;

(c) freedom of religion;

(d) freedom of speech;

(e) freedom of assembly and association; and

(f) freedom of the press.


Whether you agree with her opinions or not, she still has rights in this country, too.
6/14/2014 11:20:06 AM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
enos012 says:
That is part one of the bill of rights. You can have your FREE SPEACH as long as it doesn't infringe on the main points regarding number 1. By law you are not even allowed to swear in public and I recall a fine handed out when someone tipped thier canoe over and was fined. As for freedom of the press why does TBT news with hold many of my postings and this site monitored?
6/14/2014 11:54:47 AM
westfort resident says:
If you are engaging in meaningful conversation and expect to be taken seriously, use a spell check.

Moving on...I echo hotchoc's question: Specifically, what is hateful and racist in the ad?

The title of this story, "Fighting hate?" is inflammatory. I have yet to read anything in that ad or on Tamara's Facebook page that she is making or has made hateful comments.

Perhaps the mayor is grandstanding for the upcoming municipal election. Hmmm.

People can have opinions without being hateful or racist. Speaking publicly about issues automatically makes someone "hateful" and a "racist"? Yikes!

Those who disagree with differing views and opinions use words like "hate" and "racist". Regardless, she is entitled to her opinions, whether you agree or not.

If there are any lies in her statements, prove them wrong with verifiable facts.

Publish web links and treaty docs online with specific references to refute her statements if you are 100% sure that her statements are wrong.
6/14/2014 1:59:34 PM
enos012 says:
Well than allow me to retort. If this was done verbally I wouldn't need to worry about one simple letter. I do admit I am not the worlds greatest speller becuase I think faster than I can type and live a busy life to worry about an extra 'e' or inverted letters. See all you did was quickly try and put someone down(which is a form of bullying) to make someone feel less.(well try) I know my education and tests that I have taken which would blow you out of the water. Society for as hard as it tries is still lost in the basis of understandign which is why you fail to solve the simplest of problems. Continue you to your path of destruction....
6/14/2014 8:39:26 PM
westfort resident says:
Rather than deflecting (as politicians often do) the issues, answer the question and provide the proof.

Specifically, what is hateful and racist in the ad?

If there are any lies in her statements, prove them wrong with verifiable facts.

Publish web links and treaty docs online with specific references to refute her statements if you are 100% sure that her statements are wrong.

It takes no effort to throw around words like "hate", "racist" and "bullying", but backing up those accusations with clear, concise facts does take effort on the part of the accuser.

Show the world how smart you are. Provide verifiable facts to prove that Tamara's statements are 100% wrong.
6/15/2014 12:46:46 PM
illuminati_nation says:
People can "speak their mind" all they want in this community. But when a person's printed and spoken words are filled with racist vitriol, the public has the right to be offended and speak its mind in retort. Both Tamara & her simplistic followers shouldn't be surprised or upset that there's a backlash. After all, only 992 people sought to support her, her party and her platform in this election. And when Ward-Johnson maintains that she printed nothing "racist" in her ad - are you kidding me??? It's like someone never heard of the term "imply" before. Give me a break! I'd say her "right to speak her mind" was trumped by the peoples' right to vote insofar as patent racism is concerned.
6/14/2014 11:20:04 AM
Eastender says:
I dont agree with Tamara Johnsons politics, nor do I agree wirh her method of bringing attention to the issues she feels are relevant. Having said that, I feel that Hobbs calling her a racist is despicable, and speaks volumes about his lack of diplomacy, tact and quality of character. If you want to shut someone up because you dont like their opinions, just call them a racist, and anything else that they have to say from there on will be deemed insignificant and invalid, because, after all they are nothing but a racist, thus making yourself look like a champion. Hobbs, you are no champion. However, with the fall election coming up, I can see that the native vote will be very important to you, as you have lost much of your popularity with the rest of this city.
Yes there is racism in this city, but this was not an instance of it, by any means, only an attempt to bring certain issues to tne forefront. Hiding issues behind accusations of racism only begets more racism and solves nothi
6/14/2014 10:40:52 AM
1234 says:
I agree freedom of speech is very lacking when it comes to certain issues.
6/14/2014 10:40:42 AM
angel4u says:
using the media portraying yourself will cause hatred being so overly opinionated is one area is not good it also creates attention, that's what is all about the attention?
6/14/2014 9:01:08 AM
madtrapper says:
And Hobbs comments are motivated by ignorance of the truth.
6/14/2014 7:53:33 AM
Shane Caker says:
I don't claim to know anything about law, but I did go to grade school back in the day. Here's what I remember from grade 2 or 3 history class. The first nation folks were here first. We (the white man) sailed over here. We liked what we saw. So we made a deal with the first nations people to live here. And now this deal is worthless because the first nation folks have too many advantages? If I was still in 2nd or 3rd grade I would understand what a deal means. Too bad that so many adults don,t.
6/14/2014 12:33:24 AM
joey joe joe jr. shabadoo says:
"I remember from grade 2 or 3 history class. The first nation folks were here first"

well, the recent findings prove there were European Orthodox Christians here 1000 years ago!! Shouldn't they SPLIT with the first nations? & wouldn't that chance the name of FIRST nations to just nations then??

What we were taught in school in history isn't always correct...we just believe everything we hear now a days.
6/14/2014 11:52:27 AM
Nigel Tufnel says:
there are volumes of information, studies, historical artifacts and remains with DNA that prove Europeans of the White race were here long before our first nations ancestors were.

For many years people were taught about Christopher Columbus discovering North America and that was taught in schools. Today we know that is terribly off the mark.

We are at that stage now. The proof is there. Soluterans , Lovelock Cave mummies, Kennewick man, spirit cave dwellers, etc.. Paiutes own written records tell of "exterminating" the light skinned, red haired tribes as well.

The evidence is there. The more we learn about history, the clearer the picture gets. Sometimes people don't like the picture because it undermines what they believe and that is never met well by anybody.

but the facts are clear. the first nations people actually were not the first, nor the second.

We may find out in the future that todays firsts are really just tomorrows second. No reason to get mad, if we are all equal.

6/14/2014 11:42:38 PM
grs says:
Is her 15 minutes of fame over yet?

Tamara, you indicated on your public Facebook page that you are entering into municipal politics. You also indicated how frustrated you are about not being invited to this event. Guess what? The municipal campaign started a while back and you're late to the party.

If this is the case maybe instead of playing the 'poor me, everyone's against me' card you should think about a winning municipal strategy.
6/14/2014 12:28:02 AM
canadaboy2000 says:
And I think the Mayors comments are motivated by attracting votes from the native population. I don't care what anyone says, there is a huge issue going on with the topic if entitlements, if its fair to have different rules for different races of people, and so forth. The point that there are different rules is not opinion, its fact and law. Government actually creates this separation and division- then complains when people react to it, and aren't thrilled to fork over their hard earned money to someone else. So to say that someone is a racist, and all of this is motivated by hate- is garbage. People who work hard have a legitimate right to be upset if their tax dollars are being given away by government to people who didn't earn it, and that goes for people of any race. True equality means everyone is under the same rules- which is what Tamara preaches. Different rules for different people, is what's really racist.
6/13/2014 11:59:39 PM
Nivlacw says:
Speaking your mind is one thing but when a political candidate singles out a specific ethnicity, that is when it becomes clear that it is motivated by hate!
6/13/2014 11:33:03 PM
yqt says:
Huh, how are her statements racist? I never read the ad, but the summary sounds like facts to me regardless who were talking about.

PS, still waiting for the Department of Italian Affairs to open up a office in this country. Only fair, isn't it?
6/13/2014 11:05:32 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
hotchoc says:
I think Tamara Johnson is foolish and lacks the basic tools to enter the political ring.
I think she did not learn anything from getting kicked out as a candidate for the PC's. But when did she become the target for hate.
If you truly believe she is wrong -I AM NOT DEFENDING HER POSITION-- then feel sorry for her, for a lack of judgement and knowledge. Do not hold a press conference about one member of our city.

Are we so scared of her words that we feel the need to put on a show of defence against one woman.

Are we scared to demonstrate that she is wrong or misguided so we trot out our elected officials and make her the target because that is what they have done in response.

When you try to silence people you demonstrate to me that you are afraid of her message. Combat it with words, not demonstrations on my dime.

I am deeply disturbed by this. People may have made her a target for violence instead of dealing with her actions in a more reasoned and general way.
6/13/2014 10:33:49 PM
bigbird says:
Things need to change here, Treaties were written along time ago and times are different. We need to work together and find better solutions. These treaties are not working and most people I talk to are tied of being treated unfairly.Tamara Johnson is just saying what most people are thinking and for Mayor Hobbs comments he should get out more and start talking to the people like he said he was going to do when is first started campaigning.
6/13/2014 10:17:31 PM
REG says:
After reading those comments i wonder how the French Canadians feel. Or how about those oil companies that get alot of handouts from the federal government. These treaties were signed along time ago,but for some reason we want it all back. As Canadians we should be proud of how things turned out we taught them well maybe they are more like us than we want.
6/13/2014 9:28:21 PM
TWM says:
Opinions are one thing, they should be heard but spreading hate should have no place in any community. She is ill informed and ignorant of many facts but why should that stop her because in the end, she can hide behind the freedom of speech, freedom to express ones opinion regardless of what the message is
6/13/2014 9:26:57 PM
Rusty Nails says:
Seems like TRUTH is the NEW HATE SPEECH !!

Hobbs himself is a well experienced expert at saying all the wrong things way too often...

Hobbs does not speak for everyone of Thunder Bay or all of the "city".

There was nothing racist in Ms. Johnson's provincial election ad in the Chronicle Journal of 10 June '14.

Ms. Johnson's voter support only proves it !!
6/13/2014 9:25:58 PM
Secret Squirrel says:
Who do these people think they are trying to silence free speech? This is not a municipal issue that concerns city hall. They are starting to act like a totalitarian regime combined with a banana republic. Good thing people are still smart enough to see through this terrorist behaviour, right?
6/13/2014 9:05:56 PM
jimbob100 says:
Now we see why the her old party kicked her out.....So sad
6/13/2014 8:38:15 PM
JAR says:
People keep saying her platform is motivated by hate but its not that at all! Its motivated by equality for ALL Canadians! The minute your viewpoint is not 100% for the minorities, people label you as a racist. She has taken a lot of flak for standing up and saying what a lot of people are thinking but can't say out loud for fear of backlash. Sadly, at the end of the day if you arent standing up for the minority, you are racist. A white person is not allowed to be proud of who they are. Case in point: I see a lot of native people wearing merchandise that says "Native Pride", and thats great, they should be proud of who they are. Now what happens if I as a white man, wear a shirt that says "White Pride"?
6/13/2014 8:17:03 PM
Festus says:
I'm going to try and pick my words carefully here. I do agree with what she said, because it is true. She probably should not have used the word "native" in the point about Crown Land. but everything she said is the truth.
I understand how this ad can be seen has "racist" I don't think it was.
6/13/2014 8:08:51 PM
theangryone says:
Question to the City of Thunder Bay and HobbNobbing: When is an opinion not allowed anymore? Thought we were a nation with free speech.
6/13/2014 8:05:15 PM
Curious says:
I think he has done a lot about crime since he has been mayor .... I has almost doubled!!! More murders, knifing sand just go and sit in EMERG for a weekend evening and you will see for yourself. Unfortunately I had a grandchild in EMERG for 6.5 hrs and she was terrified. She couldn't believe what was coming in. It scared the day lights out of her. Kids have no idea what is going on. Bringing them to a walk-in is a much better experience for them . Unfortunately in our case that was not an option. She saw a side of drinking and results from it has never seen before and never wants to see again.
6/15/2014 8:27:06 AM
cdnbeaver says:
Based purely on the printed advertisement, can somebody point out which statements are racist or hate motivated? Why is it immediately assumed it is a negative attack towards first nations people? If this identical advertisement was run in any other area, would it have an equivalent reaction?
6/13/2014 7:53:29 PM
Anon says:
Whether or not you believe what she said is racist, the subject matter she speaks of is what fuels racism in this city. Whether or not we are educated on past events and treaties, the visible advantages are what fuel racism in this city.

The majority of non-status people will continue in their racist thoughts and actions if those with status continue to have a status. That's the issue. There is status, and there is non-status. This in and of itself promotes racism.

While there have been atrocities committed, and while this is what rightfully belongs to those with status, this is why there is racism. Everybody knows it, but until there is just "Canadian," there will sadly be conflict between two groups of people.
6/13/2014 7:47:23 PM
chbaker says:
... And HATE is a 2 way street. Especially around here.
I hope you're fight both sides, Mayor Hobbs.
6/13/2014 7:31:43 PM
mitsukosouma says:
It's one thing to speak your mind but at least have a clue on what it is you are criticizing.

She doesn't have anything else to say on any other issues aside from anything related to Aboriginal people.

She is a one-trick pony and needs to do some reading and learn something new.
6/13/2014 7:27:34 PM
AngelaG says:
"The first time someone calls you a horse you punch him in the mouth. The second time someone calls you a horse you call him a jerk. The third time someone calls you a horse, well, I guess it's time to start shopping for a saddle." Just because she doesn't see her comments as racist does not mean they aren't.
6/13/2014 7:20:48 PM
cm punk says:
How come we don't hear about this when other groups are subject to racial discrimination and the mayor makes a big deal about it?
Or is it swept under the rug. Then who is being racist?
6/13/2014 7:13:51 PM
ibrando says:
And you Mr.Hobbs are a liar based on your campaign promises. Btw, have you even read the Robinson Superior Treaty? If Ms. Johnson has not violated any laws then all you are doing is creating conflict where there is none.
6/13/2014 7:08:50 PM
comments unavailable says:
Lets not overlook Tamara received 900 votes and that was only half the city. (North Ward). With an on average 50% turnout to vote.
6/13/2014 7:06:30 PM
chbaker says:
Mayor Hobbs just lost MY vote.
6/13/2014 7:06:27 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
Geordie says:
If I was able to vote for her, I would have if she were in my riding. I don't agree with everything she says, (nor did I with ANY of the 3 main parties) but to jump to such conclusions is no different than what is claimed of her.
6/13/2014 7:05:29 PM
Mason bar Beenie says:
Freedom of speech is a right we have as is the right to peaceful process.
Johnson made accusations about evacuees even after Mr Nadeau refuted them on her fb page... Yet she continued to accuse people of vandalizing a hotel. I feel bad for her family as I know people are cancelling business because of her views and attitudes toward one segment of society.
She can say she hasn't said anything racist but she doesn't talk about anything else except negativity about FWFN, never positive ideas or other topics about how she would help our community in specific ways.

Freedom of speech is a right, hate propaganda and lies are not.
6/13/2014 7:03:33 PM
comments unavailable says:
Hopefully Tamara Johnson runs in the upcoming election for mayor or at least for council!
6/13/2014 7:02:33 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
Tiredofit says:
She got 900+ votes? Wow, must be a lot of bigots in her riding. Her comments are a sad statement of some individuals in today's society.

I hope she's held accountable for her actions and I for one will no longer purchase a Comical Journal! There mere fact that they actually ran the ad, regardless if they apologized, they were willing to accept the cash she forked over, I say they are just as guilty of spreading hate.

To all of the First Nations in the area, please don't think this is a reflection on the greater part of the Thunder Bay area.

Sad indeed.

If I understand it correctly she also runs a small business, I personally call for a boycott if she does.
6/13/2014 7:00:28 PM
stopthehandouts says:
Freedom of Speech. She can say whatever she wants just like the rest of us.
6/13/2014 7:00:26 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
anne098 says:
Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms: freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication. Expression of opinion needs to be respected. Just because you may not like what they have to say, does not give you any right to threaten someone else's life.
6/13/2014 6:46:57 PM
Jaydude says:
Has Keith Hobbs ever met or even spoken at any length with Tamara Johnson? I'm guessing not. If he had, he'd realize that she hasn't got a racist bone in her body. She is speaking out about something she (and many others I'm betting) feels is unfair. Last I checked our constitution guarantees us the right to freedom of speech... NOWHERE does it say we have any right to not have our feelings hurt. To the people bashing her I say, "Suck it up". Grow some thicker skin. If you don't like what she's saying, don't listen. She is clearly not promoting hate... I've seen worse, more disgusting and vile things said about Christians, and on a more regular basis and no one speak out about that. What, you don't like what someone said and now you're going to make death threats or threaten their livelihood? Grow up Thunder Bay... and you too Mr. Hobbs.
6/13/2014 6:42:56 PM
Carj says:
Once again, if an opinion isn't politically correct, it's racist. If someone's opinion is based on totally researchable fact, how is it racist? Instead of always acting emotionally, why not counter it with facts, if Hobbs can actually do that. I want to see facts, not the same rhetoric claiming someone is racist without any credible info to back it up. Hobbs will agree with anything that he figures that it will help him get a large number of votes. All Canadians are supposed to be equal, remember??? Unpopular opinions can still be accurate ones. Give me facts
6/13/2014 6:41:18 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
Back-in-the-bay says:
..their true words behind sentiments. But the reality is, even just implying the obvious makes it no better. There is no place for this type of thinking in a modern society. There is no place for this type of presumed 'free speech' in our world. These people spew hate and all the while act shocked when the rest of us, the vast majority of us, are appalled by their words and their bewilderment that most will not tolerate it.
6/13/2014 6:34:30 PM
wasaya says:
....."It's about what's slightly hidden behind your actual words".

Excellent, excellent post...
6/14/2014 6:03:09 PM
Back-in-the-bay says:
People that are in the habit of making racially divisive comments are usually pretty self assured they aren't doing that. Oddly, if every time you open your mouth you have to ad a disclaimer that you're not being racist...well, you just may want to seriously consider what you're saying. Racist comments are all too often claimed to be 'promoting equality', 'unity building' and so on, but in this case, it's really just about assimilation. 'If you're not just like how we perceive we are, then you'd better change to be just like us'. That my fellow Thunder Bay residents is culturally bias, anti acceptance and, quite seriously, racist.

Oh the famous 'I think you better read the definition of racism' to try and pretend your sentiment is not racist is also sadly a favorite of this group. Racism isn't about the Webster dictionary definition. It's about the intended hatred you have for others. It's about what's slightly hidden behind your actual words. Modern racists can easily mask
6/13/2014 6:27:54 PM
eventscentre says:
Can't even speak your own mind in this city. I'm not saying I agree with what she said, but to condemn her for speaking her mind and giving an opinion is awful. Sounds like someone is schmoozing a bit to me.....
6/13/2014 6:15:18 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
Gord says:
When you are a public figure and are quoting untruths for the purpose of spreading hate, no, you can't speak your mind. For example, I could say that all people who agree with her are stupid racist rednecks, but that wouldn't be fair to make a gross generalization like that.
6/13/2014 6:36:42 PM
eventscentre says:
It's also unfair to attempt to ostracize someone for speaking their mind. Someone is using their position to bully and discredit someone for expressing her opinion. And you can turn this right around and say that Miss Johnston was doing the same thing, but that is clearly the way she sees things. Once again...not saying I agree with her.
6/14/2014 1:22:33 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
fastball says:
But what if your opinion flies against societal norms and the current cultural mores of the day? If someone says something truly stupid and/or hateful - yeah, maybe someone should call them on it and condemn them for saying it.
Seem like everyone is jumps on the bandwagon for the concept of free speech - but no one seems to understand the concept about accepting the consequences for what comes out of their mouth.

6/13/2014 8:45:39 PM
eventscentre says:
fastball, nothing EVER got done without having an opinion that flies against societal norms. You're asking the world not to think outside the box? I've seen a lot of your comments and opinions on this site and you anonymously get pushy, and chastise people for having an opinion that differs from yours. As for Tamara Johnson accepting the consequences of having an opinion that she's expressed publicly and under her own identity....should she accept the consequences of death threats and possible acting out of these death threats. I agree with you on some subjects, but you're out to lunch today. Stop and think
6/14/2014 5:58:52 PM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
fastball says:
@eventcentre - My point was that, like it or not, there are hot-topic subjects around here...and we have to occasionally tiptoe around political correctness and the sensibilities of society. There are subjects where, even if you're right - you're going to be wrong.
I never said a thing about not thinking outside the box - all I'm saying that you have to think about what you're saying and choose your words and tone carefully. And above all, make sure your facts are right.
No one, obviously, deserves death threats for merely speaking their mind (religion not withstanding) - but a certain amount of backlash is to be expected when you start poking at society's tender bits. Don't march into a minefield, and then express surprise when they go off underfoot.
6/15/2014 12:43:46 AM
Nigel Tufnel says:
societal norms are not laws. people are allowed to speak what they want regardless if you think its against the societal norms. If you don't like it too bad.
6/14/2014 10:58:32 PM
Recommended 2 times.  2  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
humnchuck says:
Of course you can speak your mind. You can even put a full page ad in the paper. But you're also responsible for what you say or write, particularly when it conveys a level of complete ignorance for treaty law and perpetuates the stereotypes about a particular racial group.

I look forward to Ms. Johnson's evidence to support her printed claims. Or perhaps she might read a history text and discover how the treaty process actually worked.
6/13/2014 10:20:54 PM
Nigel Tufnel says:
actually the ad has zero ignorance of treaty law.

have you read them? please go do so. you will find that Tamara's knowledge of them are far from ignorant.

I think perhaps you do not know much about them and that ignorance and its exploitation has caused you to create your own stereotypes.

the evidence of her printed claims are everywhere. I can think of at least 5 blockades that were illegal just off the top of my head. ones where the courts ordered them removed but the OPP refused to enforce the law.

that's certainly valid points for political discussion. its not hate speech when the facts back them up.

and if her claims are clearly untrue as so many claim, then why is there outcry? If they are not true, why the big effort to silence them?

truth does not need false laws, press conferences, personal attacks, death threats, to prop it up. truth reigns.

Hobbs is obviously scared of the truth. He is scared of Tamara and the growing movement of her truths which expose his lies.
6/14/2014 11:20:12 PM
WhinyMcWhiner says:
Um, she did speak her own mind in this city, no one stopped her. You need to understand what freedom of speech means. You have the freedom to say whatever you want, but you do not have freedom to be condemned by the public for it. Hate speech is also not covered under freedom of speech and she is pretty borderline to that right now.

You do not have the right to a podium or an audience. You just have the right to be that crazy person babbling your face off on the street corner or the internet. No one is going to stop her, but she will be held accountable. And that is what is happening here. She is being held accountable for her divisive "us against them" opinions.

You don't make progress by singling out a minority, blaming problems on them, and then trying to pit the electorate against them. You make progress by working together with everyone, every culture, every citizen to tackle the REAL challenges our city/province faces.
6/14/2014 8:23:17 AM
enos012 says:
What are teh REAL challanges that we face? Survival was the only REAL challange, everything else was made for equality and for us to enjoy. Everything else s TRULY just thought ideals and you have livedin a system for so long and have been taught BS. You talk about an US vs Them mentality but that's what one does when they view thier own country better than another. Maye you don;t understand where that perosn comes from or try to see through what they are saying but you quickly jump out against them. I finding people more and more hprocyitcal now more than every. The problem has always been the same and will be until society changes it ways. But REAL please enlighten us.....
6/14/2014 11:31:43 AM
ring of fire dude says:
Also sounds like our Mayor of Integrity is is planning a run at Federal politics once he's done driving the City off the fiscal cliff .
6/14/2014 8:43:18 AM
Recommended 1 times.  1  Agree
Flag as Inappropriate
moi says:
Totally agree with your points...
Many people may not like what she has to say,but at last check we're all entitled to free speech in this country.
What the mayor should remember,is the old saying...
"We can agree to disagree".
6/14/2014 9:13:37 AM
Tachyion says:
Somewhat concerning that opinions which oppose others views or opinions can become labeled as " hate ". I suppose the people who oppose the events center " hate " the project, or CN is " hated " for not fixing the bridge, etc. "Hate" has become to easy a word to throw around, especially by weak minds.
6/14/2014 10:29:45 AM
Cletus Van Damme says:

You make a stand that things need to change, and you are called a racist. I totally agree with her comments. It's time to live in the now, not the past. Change things and guess what?... racism will become greatly reduced.

6/14/2014 10:43:57 AM
Hopper says:
So you're saying it's somehow justified to show derision and hatred against a group of people? That is plain ignorant.

You're ignoring the fact that Johnson was endorsed by an outspoken Canadian racist.

Racism is NEVER justified.
6/14/2014 3:02:46 PM
Cletus Van Damme says:
There is no racism to "justify".
You added that label to the comments.

6/14/2014 9:00:43 PM
Duncan Debunker says:
So, where is the hate!?...

I've read her post, this article and the multitude of comments therein and I have yet to be shown the "hate/racism" that Mrs. Johnson is being accused of. So, can someone please point out in black and white what specifically she said that deserves the distinction of racist?
She states that no group is above another. Last time I checked that's the antithesis of racism.
6/14/2014 1:28:08 PM
Comments for this story are semi-moderated. Read our comment guideline.

Add a new comment.
You must log in to add comments.
Create a new account
Log In