April 19, 2024

The Fort McMurray protest dwarfed previous rallies towards COVID-19 restrictions in the neighborhood.

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A whole lot of individuals marched via downtown Fort McMurray to protest how intercourse and gender are taught in lecture rooms. Protesters spent a lot of Wednesday carrying indicators and shouting slogans towards various pronouns in colleges, in addition to sexual orientation and gender identification (SOGI) schooling.

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Dozens of comparable rallies occurred throughout Canada in cities and cities beneath the banner “1 Million March 4 Youngsters.” Youngsters on the protest got hardhats that mentioned “palms off our children” and inspired to yell “depart us alone!”

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The Fort McMurray protest was bigger than most previous rallies towards COVID-19 restrictions. Roughly half of the protesters had been Muslim. Catholics, Christians of assorted denominations, Hindus and individuals who weren’t spiritual joined them.

The native protest was led by Zulkifl Mujahid, who ran domestically as an Impartial candidate within the Could 2023 election after he was eliminated as a candidate by the UCP, and resident Connie Shields. Councillor Shafiq Dogar was the one elected official on the protest.

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“It is a nice neighborhood, Canada is a good nation however we wish to protect our values and our values which relies on our religion and likewise our tradition,” mentioned Dogar, who added he didn’t imagine anybody shall be upset together with his participation within the rally.

Shields denied the motion was bigoted in direction of the 2SLGBTQI+ neighborhood and mentioned two of her kids are a part of the neighborhood. Mujahid mentioned the protesters’ ideas are summarized as “they don’t need sexual orientation in colleges. That’s it. Interval. We don’t need sexual orientation in colleges.”

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Protesters collect exterior the Fort McMurray Public Faculty Division throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community

No confrontations between protesters, counter protesters

Protesters began on the Jubilee Centre, marched in direction of the Fort McMurray Public Faculty Division (FMPSD) on Hardin Road than the Fort McMurray Catholic Faculty Division (FMCSD) on Most important Road. Mujahid and Wooden Buffalo RCMP stopped protesters from getting into the FMPSD constructing as kids opened the entrance doorways and screamed “depart us alone!” FMCSD locked their doorways when protesters arrived.

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There have been no violent clashes with defenders of 2SLGBTQI+ schooling. Delight YMM, which advocates for the 2SLGBTQI+ in Fort McMurray Wooden Buffalo, mentioned in an announcement they deliberately didn’t arrange counter protests. They feared this may put members in danger, but additionally felt it might draw consideration to the protesters and encourage college students to overlook college.

“Each queer neighborhood member within the RMWB deserves to be uplifted, to not be the goal of hate and a stigmatizing misinformation marketing campaign,” they mentioned.

“Each pupil deserves the correct to study in protected lecture rooms the place their names and pronouns are revered, the place they’ve equal entry to make use of a protected lavatory, the place they’re free to be their genuine selves with out concern of discrimination or hurt, and the place queer and trans college students are by no means outed with out their consent.”

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Nevertheless, two counter protesters arrived on the rally. Messages supporting the 2SLGBTQI+ neighborhood had been written in chalk exterior the Jubilee Centre.

Kg Banjoko tried drowning out the protesters with music from bluetooth speaker and shouted slogans like “hate doesn’t come from God!” Youngsters and protesters shouted again “depart us alone!” and “palms off our children!”

One other man waved a Delight flag whereas some protesters screamed at him to depart. A couple of folks driving by gave protesters a center finger. However the sounds of horns honking in assist of the rally echoed throughout downtown.

When protesters returned to the Jubilee Centre, a gaggle of kids cheered as they approached a chalk drawing of the Progress Delight Flag and threw water and water bottles at it, spat on it, and threw filth and rocks at it. One lady advised the youngsters to not litter or trample on the flowers.

In any other case, nobody stopped them.

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Zulkifl Mujahid and Connie Shields lead protesters outside the Jubilee Centre during the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
Zulkifl Mujahid and Connie Shields lead protesters exterior the Jubilee Centre throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
Protesters outside the Jubilee Centre during the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
Protesters exterior the Jubilee Centre throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
Kg Bankjoko protests against the 1 Million March 4 Children outside the Jubilee Centre on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
Kg Bankjoko protests towards the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters exterior the Jubilee Centre on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
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A person protests towards the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters exterior the Jubilee Centre on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
Protesters march through downtown Fort McMurray in the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
Protesters march via downtown Fort McMurray within the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
Children scream “leave us alone!” into the Fort McMurray Catholic School Division during the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
Youngsters scream “depart us alone!” into the Fort McMurray Catholic Faculty Division throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
protesters
Protesters collect exterior the Fort McMurray Public Faculty Division throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
Protesters outside the Fort McMurray Catholic School Division during the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
Protesters exterior the Fort McMurray Catholic Faculty Division throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
Police officers stop protesters from entering the Fort McMurray Public School Division during the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
Cops cease protesters from getting into the Fort McMurray Public Faculty Division throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
Police officers stop protesters from entering the Fort McMurray Public School Division during the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
Cops cease protesters from getting into the Fort McMurray Public Faculty Division throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
Protesters during the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
Protesters throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
Protesters outside the Fort McMurray Catholic School Division during the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
Protesters exterior the Fort McMurray Catholic Faculty Division throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
protest
A baby dumps water on a chalk drawing of the Progress Delight Flag exterior the Jubilee Centre throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
A child spits at a chalk drawing of the Progress Pride Flag outside the Jubilee Centre during the 1 Million March 4 Children on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Today/Postmedia Network
A baby spits at a chalk drawing of the Progress Delight Flag exterior the Jubilee Centre throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community
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A baby throws rocks and dust at a chalk drawing of the Progress Delight Flag exterior the Jubilee Centre throughout the 1 Million March 4 Youngsters on September 20, 2023. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray At the moment/Postmedia Community

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