Re: “Controversial Pro-Life Banner Returns On Tranquille” (The Daily News, Sept 13.)
The main problem with the Protect Human Life” banner that’s hanging over Tranquille Road right now, is NOT that the banner espouses a religious message from a religious group (although that is true, despite claims to the contrary).
The key issue is that the message challenges women’s right to access safe and
legal abortion, as well as women’s fundamental rights and equality under the law. The message is therefore discriminatory against women, which means the banner approval violates the City’s newly revised policy that says banners must respect Charter rights and human rights codes.
The innocuous-sounding words on the banner itself should not be the deciding factor for the City because right-wing groups often disguise their unpalatable messages to appeal to the public. Cities must look critically at the groups behind these requests and figure out the agenda behind the messages.
For example, the City of Regina declared a “European Heritage Week” in August, which the mayor immediately had to rescind when it was discovered that a white supremacist group was behind the request.
Likewise, the mayor of Kamloops should immediately rescind the banner approval and remove the banner. It is an affront to the women of Kamloops, many of whom can instantly recognize it as an attack on their human rights.