At Least One Proud Boys Chapter Shuts Down In Canada After Being Labelled ‘Terrorist Entity’
At least one Proud Boys chapter has shut down after the Canadian government listed the organisation as a ‘terrorist group’.
The all-male group was placed on the list earlier this month amid a crackdown on far-right violence, after the Canadian parliament unanimously passed a motion to designate it a terrorist entity.
In the wake of the ruling, the Saskatchewan chapter of the Proud Boys announced on the social media platform Parler that it was shutting down for good.
In a post on the site, the group wrote: ‘So that was fun! This is the Saskatchewan chapter signing off for good.’
The Proud Boys was one of 13 groups added to the list as public safety minister Bill Blair declared that ‘Canada will not tolerate ideological, religious or politically motivated acts of violence’.
Blair described the organisation as ‘neo-fascist’, stating its members ‘espouse misogynistic, Islamophobic, anti-Semitic, anti-immigrant, and/or white supremacist ideologies’.
The Saskatchewan chapter had a differing view of the group, describing itself in its farewell post as ‘just a beer-drinking club’ full of ‘awesome men who wish only well for their country’.
The post claimed the terror designation was the fault of Proud Boys spinoff group Canada First, which has been known to spread Nazi ideology, adding: ‘Love how Canada First got to tarnish our name then move on to just drop the Proud Boys. Should have done that from the start you dumb f*cks.’
Archived Parler posts cited by Vice show the group was recruiting new members as recently as last November, though Kurt Phillips, a researcher who works with the Canadian Anti-Hate Network, noted that the Saskatchewan chapter wasn’t ‘significant’.
Before Parler going offline there were a few posts that had been made and there were claims that they had engaged in some ‘civic activities’. However, there was never any real proof of that.
A spokesperson for the Office of the Minister of Public Safety couldn’t comment on the Saskatchewan chapter specifically due to a lack of knowledge about it, but they stressed that ‘race-based, white supremacist violence is a tragic reality in Canada, and while we have taken significant action as a government to end violence in our communities, we also know there is more to do. ‘
The spokesperson added: ‘We are committed to doing that work. We strongly denounce organizations, such as the Proud Boys, who advance misogynistic, white supremacist beliefs and glorify violence.’
The Saskatchewan is thought to be one of 15 Proud Boys chapters across Canada.
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